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Third Tenure of the Foreign Office — Switzerland — Spanish Mar- 
riages — Portugal — Annexation of the Punjaub ... 1 * 


Lord Minto's Mission to Italy — Ireland — Sicily . . . 42 


Arbitration — Movements in Italy — French devolution — Chartist 
Agitation in London — War between Austria and Italy — Sir 
Robert Peel at the Mansion House — French Occupation of 
Rome — Debates in Parliament — Cholera — Naples ... 59 


War in Hungary — Question of the Hungarian Refugees . • 103 


Greek Affairs and * Don Pacifico ' Debate 12$ . 



PAGE jt 

Letters — General Haynau at Barclay's Brewery — Ecclesiastical 
Titles Bill — National Defences — Mr. Gladstone's Letters about 
Neapolitan Prisons — Ionian Islands — Defence in Parliament- 
Question of « Holy Places ' 164 


Bemoval from the Government — Explanations in the House of 

Commons 193 


Fall of the Russell Administration — Lord Derby's Government 
— Dissolution — Speeches at Tiverton and Lewes — Letters — 
Defeat of the Derby Cabinet 229 


Goes to the Home Office in the Aberdeen Administration — Work 

at Home Office — Temporary Resignation 258 % 


» Bussian Policy — Occupation of Principalities; movements of 
English Fleet — Lord Aberdeen — Active, preparations for war — 
Reform Club Banquet — Proposes Crimean Expedition— 1855 
— Motion of Mr. Roebuck — Resignation of Lord John Russell — 
Defeat of the Government 272 


Becomes Prime Minister — Attends to State of the Army — Negotia- 
tions at Vienna —Reforms for Turkey — Conference breaks up . 304 


Renewal of Negotiations— Peace Signed — Declaration of Paris — 
Disputes about execution of Treaty — Misunderstanding with 
the United States -Death of Sir William Temple— Egypt- 
Persian Affairs . " i . • 323 





Quarrel with China — Resolution carried by Mr. Cobden against 
the Government — Dissolution — Indian Mutiny — Government 
India Bill — Defeat on Conspiracy Bill — Resignation . 344 


Out of Office — Goes to Compfrgne — Derby Government defeated 
on Reform Bill, 1859 — Dissolution — Outbreak of Franco- 
Austrian War — Vote of Want of Confidence in Ministers 
— Second Premiership— Italian Aifairs — Spain and Morocco — 
Fortifications 358 


France and. the Italian Duchies — Syria — Emperor Napoleon's 
Schemes — Neutrality of Savoy — Attitude of France — The 
'Derby* of 1860 — Conflict between Lords and Commons on 
Paper Duties — Discussion about the ' Press ' . • . . 370 


State of Parties — Lord Wardenship of the Cinque Ports— Civil 
War in America — Cotton Supply — Turkish Finances — Visit to 
Harrow— Father Daly — Death of Prince Consort — 'Trent' 
Affair — National Expenditure— Church Patronage . . 402 


Russia and Poland — Visit to Scotland— Proposed Congress— Den- 
mark and Sleswig-Holstein — London Conference — Danish 
Debate — Visit to Northamptonshire — Criminal Lunacy — Cu- 
ban Slavery — Irish Catholics — Convocation — Last Illness and 
Death 41& 


Character — Characteristics of Style of Writing and Speaking . 468 

Index 487 






book n. 



Lokd Palmerstox was close upon sixty-two years of 
age when, in 1846, he went to the Foreign Office for 
the third and last time. Nearly twenty years elapsed 
before he died, but death found him still in harness 
and the working head of a powerful Administration. 
During this long space, with only two short intervals, 
he was continuously in office — first as Foreign Secre- 
tary, next as Home Secretary, and twice as Prime 

Of these years the five given up to c Foreign 
Affairs ' were the most unquiet which, with his own 
country at peace, could fall to any man's lot, and 
culminated in his abrupt retirement at the close of 
1851. The year which immediately succeeded his 
taking the seals was sufficiently full of anxious events, 




such, as the Spanish marriages, civil wars in Spain and 
Portugal, and the disturbances in Switzerland, which,, 
at one moment, seriously threatened the independence 
of that sturdy little republic ; but these formed but & 
fit prelude to the storm which broke over Europe in 
1848, and continued to rage throughout the following 

To aid, by his countenance and counsel, the triumph 
and maintenance of constitutional freedom, was Lord 
Palmerston's desire. He foresaw clearly enough the 
results of despotic repression. The events of the revo- 
lutionary year were, in his opinion, but the natural 
fruits of the growths planted by the hands of absolute 
sovereigns. To prune betimes was, as he incessantly 
pointed out, the only check which kings, ministers, and 
patriots could usefully apply. In fact, during the 
whole of 1847, he was bent on giving such aid as waa 
in his power to those Governments which were willing 
and able to ' put their house in order/ While, how- 
ever, he recognised the necessity, he was little hopeful 
in the prospect. History admonishes us, he used to 
say, that rulers seldom have the forecast to substitute, 
in good time, reform for revolution. They take no note 
of changes around them, and forget that it is the pre- 
existing spirit of slavery in the people that has made 
tyrants in all ages of the world. No tyrant ever made 
a slave who was not one already — no community, how- 
ever small, having the spirit of freemen ever had a 
master for long. When subjects change their spirit, 
they will also restrain or else change their rulers. 

The following extract from a circular despatch sent 
to the British representatives in Italy, in January, 1848,, 
gives such a clear compendium of his views and of Wlj 
previous endeavours in other directions that I here 
insert it : — 

The situation of the sovereigns of Italy towards their snb^j 
jects is one of which advantage may be taken by the enemies 
both. It is not difficult to convey to the sovereigns false 
ports that risings are intended, and to create ife their 


unfounded impressions that revolutionary plots are in agitation. 
On the other hand, the same agency may be employed to repre- 
sent to the people that their sovereigns are insincere in their 
promises of concessions, and thus the people, being stimulated to 
use force for the purpose of securing political reforms, the very 
acts to which they may have been delusively led on may be con- 
verted into a pretext for depriving them of the objects of their 
legitimate expectations. 

It will be your duty to counteract, as far as possible, these 
sinister efforts. You are instructed to say to the Minister that 
the direction of the progress of reform and. improvement is still 
in the hands of the sovereigns, but that it is now too late for 
them to attempt to obstruct reasonable progress ; and that re- 
sistance to moderate petitions is sure to lead ere long to the 
necessity of yielding to irresistible demands. That it is better 
for a Government to frame its measures of improvement with 
timely deliberation, and to grant them with the grace of sponta- 
neous concession, than to be compelled to adopt, on the sudden, 
changes perhaps insufficiently matured, and which, being wrung 
from them by the pressure of imperious circumstances, invert 
the natural order of things, and being of the nature of a capi- 
tulation of the sovereign to the subject, may not always be a 
sure foundation for permanent harmony between the Crown and 
the people. 

To the popular leaders with whom you may have inter- 
course, you should use language of the same tendency and argu- 
ments drawn from the same considerations. You should tell 
them that force put upon the inclinations of their sovereigns 
will produce ill-will and repugnance, which must lead their 
rulers, on their part, to be constantly looking out for an oppor- 
tunity of shaking off the yoke which they may have been obliged 
to bear. That mutual distrust will thus be created between the 
governors and the governed. That this distrust will break out 
in overt acts on each side, intended perhaps defensively by those 
by whom done, but regarded as offensive by the other party. 
That open discord will thence ensue, and foreign interference 
may be the ultimate result. 

It was imbued with these sentiments that Lord 
Palmerston scanned the horizon, and one of the first 
matters to attract his attention was the state of Swit- 
jrland. He naturally viewed with the greatest concern 
le possibility of any such interference by the Great 


Powers with that free confederacy as might com- 
promise her political independence, or endanger the 
position which she held as the home and refuge of 
liberty on the Continent. His influence, as will be 
seen, contributed very materially to avert any such 

To understand the events which were occurring in 
that country, it is necessary to remember that, up to 
the commencement of the present century, the con- 
dition of a Swiss canton was like that of a feudal lord 
with an aggregate of seigneurial and subject properties. 
It had two councils, great and small, but the real 
powers of government were all exercised by the small 
or executive council, while the great or legislative 
council had neither initiative, independence, nor pub- 
licity of debate. In 1846, of the 2,400,000 inhabitants 
of Switzerland, about 900,000 were Eoman Catholics, 
and the remainder Protestants, while each of the twenty- 
two cantons had an equal voice in the Diet whatever 
the disparity as to size, wealth, or, we may add, intel- 
ligence. In the Catholic cantons the clergy enjoyed 
great privileges and power, and the people generally 
were in a state of ignorant submission to their direc- 

The French Eevolution of 1830 gave an impetus to 
a movement towards more liberal and popular institu- 
tions, and the Radical party became speedily opposed 
to the Conservative. The Roman Catholic priests and 
Jesuits in three of the small cantons took, as might 
have been expected, an active part on the Conservative 
side, and were incessant workers in a series of counter- 

The introduction of the Jesuits into the important 
canton of Lucerne, which had, up to the year 1844, 
been free from their noisome presence, put the torch to 
materials which had thus long been piling up ready for 
the flame. The seven Eoman Catholic cantons found 
it necessary, if they wished to resist the decrees of the 
rest of the Federation, to form themselves into a 


separate league — offensive and defensive. This new 
Confederacy took the name of the 6 Sonderbund.' 

On the 20th of July, 1846, the Federal Diet voted 
the Sonderbund illegal, and decreed, on the 3rd of Sep- 
tember, the expulsion of the Jesuits from the four can- 
tons of Lucerne, Schwytz, Freyburg, and Valais, in 
which they were established. A civil war was the in- 
evitable consequence. 

Meanwhile, however, the French Government had 
proposed that England, France, Austria, Russia, and 
Prussia should make a collective declaration recom- 
mending the arbitration of the Pope in the dispute 
about the Jesuits — proposing a conference for modify- 
ing the Federal compact, and announcing to the Swiss 
Diet that if they refused these propositions and pro- 
ceeded with the war, the five Powers would consider 
the Confederation as no longer existing — in other 
words, a proposal to compel the Swiss by force of 
arms to adopt the views of the Great Powers. Lord 
Palmerston, on behalf of the British Government, re- 
fused to accept this proposal. He stood at first alone, 
because the rights of Prussia over Neufchatel prompted 
her to interfere, although, as a Protestant Power, she 
felt no sympathy for the seceders ; and the Austrian, 
followed by the Russian, was not more with him than 
the Frenchman. The view that Prince Metternich took 
was, that the neutrality of Switzerland could only be 
respected so long as she was one Federal Republic — 
her neutrality being founded on her Federal consti- 
tution ; but the view of Lord Palmerston was, that her 
independence would be equally necessary and equally 
right whether she was federated or not. Metternich 
and Guizot were both jealous of Switzerland becoming 
a united and, therefore, powerful military state. They, 
accordingly, secretly aided the seven cantons, and, in 
the words of Lamartine, almost treated the Diet as a 
* faction.' 

The matter was, no doubt, for a time one full of 
anxieties. Mr. Morier had reported from Berne in 


October, 1846: c Altogether it may be safely affirmed, 
that from this time forth the Federal Bund is virtually 
dissolved, and Switzerland, as a political body, in a 
state of decomposition ;' and Chevalier Bunsen, Prussian 
Minister in London, becoming at length alarmed, wrote 
to Lord Palmerston: 'Don't let the affair slip out of 
your hands ; it is very serious/ 

The following letter to Lord Minto, who had gone 
on a mission to Italy, gives the views of the British 
Government : — 

¥. O.: November 11, 1847. 

If the Diet get possession of the canton of Freyburg and 
dispose of the Jesuits there, it will go some way towards settling 
the pending questions, and if the Diet can also get a friendly 
Government established at Lucerne, and by that means drive 
the Jesuits out of that canton, I should think tliat they need 
not very much care about their remaining in some of the smaller 
cantons. • But the best would be if the Pope would take some 
step to induce them to evacuate Switzerland altogether. 

Broglie 1 says that there will be no difficulty in getting the 
Pope to take some steps about the Jesuits, but then ho says that 
they are not the real object, but only a pretence, and that when 
they are got rid of some other demand will bo made which will 
be found unreasonable. I say, in reply, yield to-day that which 
is reasonably asked, and resist to-morrow that which you will 
be borne out in resisting, but do not let us put ourselves in the 
wrong to-day merely for fear that wo may find ourselves in the 
right to-morrow. I send you copies of the communication which 
we have received from the French Government on Swiss affairs ; 
I am going immediately to write an answer. It will be in 
substance that we are willing to join the other Powers in an 
endeavour to put an end to the civil war by an offer of media- 
tion, but not willing to meddle with the revision of the Federal 
compact. But that before the five Powers make a joint offer of 
mediation, it seems desirable that they should be agreed as to 
the conditions of settlement which the)' would think fair between 
the parties. That our notion is this : We think that the Jesuit 
question is a political as well as, and much more than a religious 
question, and that it is at the bottom of the whole of the present 
quarrel. "We therefore propose that the Sonderbund cantons 

1 French ambassador in London. 


should declare themselves ready to abide by any decision which 
the Pope may make on that question, and that the five Powers 
■should pledge themselves to the Diet to use all their influence 
at Rome to obtain from the Pope the recall of the Jesuits from 
the whole of Switzerland, they receiving, of course, compensa- 
tion for lands or houses which they might be thus obliged to 
leave. This grievance removed, we should propose that the 
Diet should renounce all hostile intentions against the seven 
cantons, and should renew their often-made declaration that 
they acknowledge and mean to respect the sovereignty of the 
separate cantons of which the Confederation is composed. This 
done, the Sonderbund having no further pretence for their 
union, that union should be dissolved, and then the whole matter 
is settled. The Swiss would then go to work, in the manner 
prescribed by the Federal compact, to make any alterations or 
improvements in that compact which they might wish or want. 
I do not expect that the five Powers will agree to this scheme ; 
for Austria, France, and perhaps Russia take part openly with 
the Sonderbund, and Guizot's despatch only repeats the propo- 
sition made by the Sonderbund, and rejected by the Diet, and 
any proposal to that effect made by the five Powers would of 
course share the same fate. Guizot's object, of course, is to try 
to put the Diet apparently in the wrong, so as to afford him 
and Austria some kind of pretext for violent measures after- 
wards. The draft of note is a paraphrase of the manifesto of 
the three Powers last year about the extinction of Cracow. I 
could not possibly put my name to such a paper, and I wonder 
how Guizot would defend himself to the deputies for having put 
his name to it. 

And on November 17 he writes to the same : — 

Guizot will have to choose between us and the three Powers ; 
for I conclude that his draft of note was suggested by Austria. 
Russia will follow Austria ; and the Prussian Government have 
at once accepted his plan. Broglie, however, says his own per- 
sonal and private opinion is with us ; and it seems to me that 
public opinion in France would not go along with Guizot in the 
course he has proposed to us. We shall lie on our oars till we 
get an answer from Paris to the despatch which went thither 
last night. In the meantime, if the Pope would take any steps 
about the Jesuits, he would increase the chances of peace ; but 
they have gone too far in Switzerland to admit of a settlement 
on the principle of the mere recall of the Jesuits from Lucerne. 


France having accepted the modifications proposed 
by Lord Palmerston in the plan of mediation, he writes 
to Lord Ponsonby at Vienna on the 20th : — 

F. 0. : November 20, 1847. 

You will see that the French Government are willing to 
agree to our proposal as to the oner of mediation between the 
contending parties in Switzerland. The explanations which 
they wish us to accept, and to which we have no objection, are, 
that the Jesuits should be withdrawn, by the joint concurrence 
of the seven cantons and of the Pope. All we require is, that 
the foundation of the arrangements should be that the Jesuits 
should be removed from the whole of the territory of the Con- 
federation, because we are now quite convinced that things have 
now gone so far, and popular feeling has been so strongly roused 
against them, that unless they leave Switzerland entirely there 
is no chance of peace in that country. The next explanation of 
the French is, that they understand the separate sovereignty of 
the confederated cantons to carry with it the result, that no 
change can be made in the Federal compact without the consent 
of all the cantons, and they hold that this principle ought to 
be admitted by the Diet. "We think this reasonable, and are 
willing to agree to it as the foundation of the settlement which 
is to be proposed. The French, thirdly, say that, in agreeing 
to our proposal that the refusal of the joint offer of mediation, if 
it should be unfortunately refused, in not to be used as a pretext 
for armed interference, they must make this reserve, that all 
parties are to remain after such refusal possessed of all the rights 
in regard to measures with respect to Switzerland which they at 
present possess. To this we can, of course, make no objection. 

The French a^ree to the conference being in London, and 
we hope that P. Metternich will not object to this. I do not 
think that we should willingly consent to join a conference to 
be held anywhere but here. 

Meanwhile, however, the capture of Freyburg by 
the forces of the Diet under General Dufour brought 
the war to an abrupt termination, and obviated the 
necessity of the proposed mediation. Lord Palmer- 
ston's object had been gained, and the delay had been 
of incalculable service to the cause of Swiss inde- 


Sir Stratford Canning, who was on his way to his 
post at Constantinople, had been instructed by Lord 
Palmerston to take Berne on his way, where his cha- 
racter and abilities might be of service in enforcing 
the counsels of the English Foreign Office. Lord Pal- 
merston writes to him : — 

F. 0. : December 18, 1847. 

I hope you may be able to persuade the Diet to give up 
their vindictive measures against their opponents at Freyburg 
and Lucerne. It really would be very disgraceful of them if 
they made such a bad use of their victory ; and they might re- 
member that the wheel of fortune has many turns, and that it 
might happen that, in some future change of things, the measure 
which they now mete out to others might be measured back 
again to themselves. At all events, such confiscations and 
punishments leave enduring resentments and perpetuate party 
animosities, without any counterbalancing advantage, except 
to the individuals who thus transfer to themselves the property 
which rightfully belongs to others. Besides, there is not in 
this case a shadow of a principle to justify their proscriptions. 
If a set of Russian, or Polish, or Galician nobles revolt against 
their sovereign, they are clearly on the wrong side of the law ; 
and if they fail, they must abide by the consequences. If a 
Polignac violates the constitution of his country, and fails in 
Ms attempt, he may partly be made to pay in person and in 
fortune the penalty of his illegal acts. But in the case of Frey- 
burg and Lucerne there was no violation of the laws of the 
canton. There was a decision taken by the sovereign authority 
of the canton which the Federal Government thought at variance 
with the Federal obligations and engagements of those cantons ; 
but this cannot, by any fair construction of words, be called 
high treason. Treason means the violation of some duty to- 
wards the sovereign power of the state of which the accused is 
citizen or subject ; but such a crime cannot be committed by 
the government of a sovereign state towards the confederates 
of that state. Freyburg and Lucerne were not subjects of the 
Confederation, and could not be guilty of high treason towards it.. 

There being still some danger of an Austrian inter- 
vention, Lord Palmerston sent the following to Lord 
Ponsonby : — 


F. 0. : December 21, 1817. 

It seems to me, from Canning's accounts of his conversa- 
tions with Ochsenbein, 1 that the Swiss will pursue a more 
moderate line of conduct than at first appeared likely ; and it 
seems quite certain that they will afford the four Powers no 
valid reason for interference. At the same time, I wish you to 
lose no opportunity of endeavouring to dissuade Metternich 
from any attempt of the kind. He could not interfere without 
France doing so too ; and whatever may be the professions or 
even the sincere intentions of Louis Philippe and Guizot, he 
may depend upon it, as sure as he is alive, that any interference 
of France in the internal affairs of Switzerland would turn to 
the account of France, and would be adverse to the interests of 

In fact, if French troops were to enter Switzerland, they 
would sympathise with the Liberals, and not with the party 
which Metternich would wish to favour. If there is one 
maxim of policy which Metternich ought to hold by more than 
another, it is to keep the French out of Switzerland and out of 
Italy ; but if Austrian troops enter one or the other, French 
troops will follow, and Austria will rue the day when she paved 
the way for such a military movement by France. 

Spain was once described by the Duke of Welling- 
ton as the only country where two and two did not 
make four, and the unexpected events of which it has 
so often been the theatre might appear to justify the 
assertion. Few of them, however, have been so whim- 
sically sudden, or so uselessly mischievous, as that which 
towards the end of the year 1846 startled and irritated 
England under the name of the ' Spanish Marriages.' 

Queen Isabella and her sister the Infanta were 
young and unmarried. To secure the succession it 
was necessary to find them husbands. The question in 
debate was, who these were to be. 

It had been the settled policy of England — as 
indeed of the other European Powers — ever since the 
War of the Spanish Succession, to provide against the 
contingency of a union of the crowns of France and 
Spain, in the person of one sovereign or in the same 

1 President of the Diet. 


line, and the Treaty of Utrecht gave solemn expression 
to this agreement. The rulers of England felt that, 
bad as it was for her in the last century to find herself 
engaged in differences and wars with Spain, not upon 
Spanish but upon French grounds, it would be still 
worse now, when Prance occupied 500 miles of the 
opposite coast of Africa with a large naval station at 
Algiers. It was held, therefore, to be a great and 
paramount object with us, that Spain should be com- 
pletely independent, and that her policy should not be 
founded upon French considerations; so that if ever 
we found ourselves at war with France, we should not 
merely on that account find ourselves involved in war 
with Spain also. Lord Palmerston, therefore, when he 
succeeded Lord Aberdeen at the Foreign Office, re- 
iterated the views which had been expressed by his 
predecessor, and which had elicited from the French 
Government distinct pledges that no son of Louis 
Philippe should marry Isabella, or even the Infanta 
until the succession to the Spanish throne had been se- 
cured by the Queen becoming a mother. These pledges 
were in the autumn of 1846 broken both in their 
letter and spirit. It was suddenly announced that the 
Queen would marry her cousin, Don Francisco, and 
that her sister would on the same day become the wife 
of the Duke of Montpensier, the youngest son of the 
King of the French. Apart from the discreditable 
breach of faith which characterised this intrigue, the 
peculiar foulness of the transaction lay in the fact that 
the French King and his Minister had ascertained that 
there could be no issue of the marriage between the 
Queen and her cousin, and calculated on securing by a 
disgusting fraud that which they were solemnly bound 
by their own engagements to prevent. Yet Guizot's 
ideas of right and wrong, of honour and dishonour, 
had become so warped by his feelings of antagonism to 
lord Palmerston, that, regardless of the universal con- 
demnation which his conduct and that of his master 
elicited both in England and throughout Europe, he 


actually boasted to the French Chamber, when they 
met, that the Spanish marriages constituted the first 
great thing France had accomplished completely single- 
handed in Europe since 1830. Retribution, however, 
soon fell on all concerned, and the objects aimed at 
were not attained. Montpensier's wife never came to 
the throne, while Louis Philippe had to descend from 
his own. The fall of his Government and of his dynasty 
was undoubtedly hastened by the position of isolation, 
distrust, and contempt in which they were placed by 
this act and by the feelings which it provoked among 
the French people themselves as well as abroad. Eng- 
land only suffered in this respect, that from the date 
of this transaction the close alliance between the two 
countries was broken — distrust succeeded to confidence, 
causing, indeed, one of those periodical invasion scares 
to which the English people are liable — and the abso- 
lutist courts of Europe took advantage of this state of 
things to carry out their high-handed proceedings in 
Poland and elsewhere. 

The following letter is amongst the first private 
papers of Lord Palmerston after his return to office. 
It is interesting, because we see in it the germ of his 
policy as to Italy, which found so many detractors and 
defenders. He foresaw that if Rome remained as it 
was, a French army would eventually enter it. He 
foresaw also, that if Italy remained as it was, a war 
between France and Austria was inevitable : — 


Foreign Office : July 30, 1846. 

My dear John Russell, — I send you a copy of the Memo- 
randum which, in 1831, was presented to the Pope on behalf of 
the five Powers, and which was defeated by adverse influences, 
although the recommendations which it contains were entirely 
approved by Cardinal Bernetti and others in authority at 

The matter is really one of great and serious importance, 
and has bearings much more extensive than at first sight 
might appear. Italy is the weak part of Europe, and the next 
war that breaks out in Europe will probably arise out of Italian 


affairs. The government of the Papal States is intolerably 
bad ; nothing can make men submit to such misrule, but phy- 
sical force and despair of external assistance. 

These States had formerly municipal institutions of great 
antiquity, which gave them much civil security. These insti- 
tutions were swept away by the French invasion, and were not 
re-established at the peace of 1815. Outbreaks and insurrec- 
tions and conspiracies have followed each other in rapid succes- 
sion, sometimes when there was, often when there was not, a 
prospect of succour from without. The French Revolution of 
1830 produced an explosion in the Roman States, and that 
explosion led to the conferences out of which the Mem. arose. 
Nothing was done, and discontent has more than once been since 
manifested by overt acts. Leave things as they are, and you 
leave France the power of disturbing the peace of Europe when- 
ever she chooses. Two or three millions of francs, properly 
applied, will organise an insurrection at any time, and the as- 
cendancy of the Liberal party at Paris, whenever it may happen, 
either by the result of an election or by the death of the long, 
will soon be followed by an outbreak in Italy. That is the 
point to which the French Liberals look ; they know that if 
they tried to get back to the Rhino they would have against 
them all Germany united, Russia, and more or less England ; 
but in supporting an insurrection in Italy against Papal mis- 
government, they would stand in a very different position. 
England would probably take no part against them ; Prussia 
would not stir a foot ; Russia would not be very active, and, 
perhaps, secretly not displeased at anything that might humble 
and weaken Austria. But Austria would interfere, and could 
scarcely help doing so, even though not very efficiently backed 
by Russia ; France and Austria would then fight each other in 
Italy, and Fra j would have all the Italians on her side. But 
the war, begun in Italy, would probably spread to Germany, 
and, at all events, we can have no wish to see Austria broken 
down and France aggrandised, and the military vanity and love 
of conquest of the French revived and strengthened by success. 
If these things should happen, and they may not be so distant 
as many may suppose, people will naturally ask what the Whig 
Government of 1846 was about, and why they did not take 
advantage of the liberal inclinations of the new Pope to en- 
courage and induce him to make reforms, which, if then made, 
might have prevented such events. I own that I for one should 
be altogether at a loss for any answer to such an interrogation. 


If, on the other hand, we take the step which I propose to tab 
towards the other four Powers, we shall either succeed or fail 
If we succeed in getting any one or more to join us, I believe 
we shall be doing a thing agreeable, as well as useful, to thf 
Pope, and shall strengthen and support him in effecting reform* 
which every enlightened member of the Roman Government 
has long seen and acknowledged to be necessary. If, on the 
contrary, we fail, and if all four should refuse to do anything, 
we shall at least stand justified, and shall be able to show thai 
we are wholly absolved from the responsibility of any misfor- 
tunes which may hereafter arise from that quarter. 

Far from being animated by the passions of the 
revolutionist — as it was the fashion of party then tea 
describe him — Lord Palmerston wished to turn revolu- 
tion everywhere aside by compromise. 

His error, if error it was, consisted in thinking thafl 
a government of priests would willingly resign anji 
portion of their power to laics ; and that men of the 
stamp of Mazzini and his disciples would care twe 
straws about moderate constitutional government^ 
The first idea was to open diplomatic relations with: 
Borne, and send a regular ambassador. No regulafl 
ambassador or minister, however, was ever named ; anS 
thus Lord Minto was ultimately sent on a special! 
mission, which will presently be spoken of. The affairs 
of Italy were not alone in demanding attention at this 
time. In Portugal, the intrigues of France and Spairr 
to undermine the traditional influence of EnglancE 
had created a confused variety of factions ; whilst th^ 
want of tact and judgment on the part of the Court,* 
both as to the measures it adopted and the men it em- 
ployed, had produced dissatisfaction, terminating in 
insurrection. The civil war which broke out with the 
revolutionary supreme Junta was caused by the arbi- 
trary acts of the Royal Government, who hoped for a 
Spanish intervention in their behalf. As the Crown 
could neither subdue the rebels, nor the rebels triumph 
over the Crown, the country was in a state of anarchy, 
amidst which the Queen was not unlikely to lose her 


throne, and Portugal its last chance of reviving pros- 

Lord Palmerston's endeavours, from October, 1846, 
to the following March, were directed to persuade the 
Portuguese Government to come to terms with the 
Junta, and to prevent Spain from interfering by force 
of arms. In the spring of 1847, he found that the 
Portuguese Government would not come to terms with 
the Junta, and that the Spanish Government would 
interfere, in spite of England, if the throne of Donna 
Maria should be in imminent danger. None could 
deny that her throne was in such danger, and that the 
-whole country was going to ruin by reason of the war. 
The British Cabinet therefore, at last, determined to 
intervene, and, in conjunction with the naval forces of 
JYance and Spain, brought the conflict to an end on 
the basis of an amnesty and the constitution. By this 
means, while serving the interests of British commerce, 
Lord Palmerston was enabled to secure to the Portu- 
guese nation those concessions which would not have 
been made if Spain had interfered singly at the request 
of the Absolutist Party, and saved the Portuguese 
Government from that political dependence on Spain 
which would have been the result of obligations due to 
her alone. 

A more glaring violation of the Whig principle of 
non-intervention could hardly be cited ; but it was a 
Useful one, and served to add to the many proofs that 
anight be given of the absurdity of establishing general 
theoretic rules to be practically applicable to every 
Variety of case. In the mutable condition of human 
affairs there is but one universal doctrine that a states- 
man should preach to a sensible people — the necessity of 
acting in such a manner as, according to circumstances, 
may be the best for the particular country he governs, 
and most advantageous to mankind at large. 

The following correspondence gives somewhat more 
in detail a consecutive account of the action taken by 
the British Government in the matter : — 


Foreign Office : Oct. 30, 1846. 

My dear Normanby, — I am this afternoon returned from 
Windsor, where I have been for two days. The Queen and 
Prince are very anxious and uneasy about the state of Portugal. 
We send off to-morrow Colonel Wylde, who goes in the Cyclops, 
from Portsmouth to Oporto and Lisbon, to see and report on 
the state of things, and we shall order a reinforcement of our 
naval force in the Tagus. But this is all we can at present do, 
and our interference must be confined to giving advice and 
taking care of the personal safety of the Queen. It is a most 
unfortunate state of things ; but I trust the danger is somewhat 
exaggerated ; still it is great ; and what makes matters worse, 
it has been brought on by the folly of the Court, instigated I 
believe by the German tutor, Diez. 1 It was foreseen that, if 
the elections went on and the new Chambers should meet, one 
of their first acts would be to address the Queen to remove the 
intermeddling tutor. Thereupon he set to work td secure him- 
self, little caring for or little foreseeing the danger in which he 
was involving the King and Queen. The only way, as he 
thought, to avoid the address was to prevent the meeting of the 
Cortes, this could only be done by getting rid of the Govern- 
ment which was pledged to call them ; the way in which that 
could be accomplished was by making a coup d'etat ; and so it 
was made, against the advice of all persons whose judgment was 
worth having, and without consulting Lord Howard, because 
they knew he would have been against it ; and contrary to the 
opinion of our Court, though I believe that opinion arrived too 


Carlton Terrace : Nov. 1, 184G. 

My dear Normanby, — We have heard of Parker's arrival 
at Lisbon, with his whole squadron, so that our naval force in 
the Tagus will now be respectable. No doubt his presence will 
produce a useful effect ; when people see a strong force, they dof' 
not exactly know how far such a force may be authorised to act, 
and they fear the worst, and guide themselves accordingly. 
Parker will be instructed to protect the persons of the Royal 
Family, if they should be obliged to take refuge on board their 
own line-of-battle ship in the Tagus, or on board one of ours ; 
and in case of need he will be authorised to garrison the fort of 
Belem with his marines ; but you had better say nothing about 

1 This gentleman had been placed by his family about the young 


tliis latter point, lest the French should intrigue to prevent it. 
But if you should hear of its having been done, you will know 
that it will have been sanctioned by the British Government. 
Rothschild said to me last night that he heard from Paris that 
the Government there said they should not mind our squadron 
going into the Tagus provided we did not send any land troops. 
I think they can hardly have said this, because they know well 
that we are bound by old and special treaties with Portugal, 
and that if the casus foederis were to arise we should not inquire 
whether the French Government minded or not that which we 
might feel ourselves called upon by our treaty engagements 
to do. 

It had been under the influence and auspices of 

Costa Cabral, who was once termed in a debate in the 

House of Commons the ' Jonathan Wild ' of European 

diplomatists, and who had started life as a furious 

Liberal, that the Portuguese Government had entered 

on their course of exasperating tyranny. Soon after 

Cabral had been compelled to fly, the Marquis de Sal- 

danha occupied the post of President of the Council, 

but he succeeded to the taint of Cabral's policy and 

reaped its fruits. The head-quarters of the rebels 

under the revolutionary supreme Junta of Government 

was at Oporto. Lord Palmerston, on the eve of an 

attack upon that place by the Eoyal troops, determined 

to try to negotiate between the parties, and so avoid 

the loss of life and property which the capture of 

Oporto by storm would necessarily involve. He wrote, 

therefore, to Colonel Wylde, under the date of January 

26, 1847, instructing him to go to Oporto and to enter 

on the following negotiation : — 

The basis of negotiation must be a declaration and engagement 
made by the Queen, to you, as the representative in this matter 
of the British Government, that immediately on the termination 
of the civil war, she will establish constitutional government, 
Mid call a Cortes without delay. Unless this assurance is given 
m the most formal and positive manner, we cannot meddle with 
the matter. She ought, I think, also to assure us that she 
^ffl not, for the present at least, bring into office the Cabrals, 
against whom the revolt has taken place. Of course she would 



not be expected to exclude them for ever from power ; their 
turn may come ; but to replace them just now would be to irri- 
tate and provoke a large portion of the country. With those 
assurances in your hand, you may be well entitled to urge the 
Junta to lay down their arms and submit to the Queen's au- 
thority. Of course they would say, the assurances given may 
be satisfactory as to the nation, but what is to become of us as 
individuals, and how are we to be secured ? 

The general basis of the conditions should, I think, be 
amnesty for the mass of the insurgents ; precautions as to some 
of the chiefs and leaders. That security was wisely and liberally 
stated in Saldanha's Articles to consist in their temporary 
retirement from Portugal ; the military so retiring to have half- 
pay for their support. For the civilians no provision was pro- 
posed by Saldanha, because, I presume, he concluded that most 
of them had means of their own; and I infer and take for 
granted, that no confiscations or sequestrations of property are 
thought of. The difficulty, and it is one which we in this 
country have no personal knowledge which would enable us to 
solve, is, how far these voluntary and temporary banishments 
are to go. There may be a certain number of men whom it 
would be better for their own sakes and for the peace of the 
country for a short time to remove from Portugal. But if the 
list is made large, and I think Saldanha's Articles make it much 
too comprehensive, the Queen will lose the services of many 
men who, though they have been opposed to her Government 
and Ministers on the present occasion, might, when the contest 
is over, become very useful servants of the Crown ; and it must 
. also be remembered that if all the leading men of the Liberal 
party are to be compelled to leave the country, though only for 
a time, the conduct of affairs must necessarily fall into the 
hands of the opposite set of men, who have been clearly proved 
to l>e hateful to a large portion of the nation ; and that is not 
the way to restore contentment in the country. 

Sir Hamilton Seymour had now succeeded Lord 
Howard as English Minister at Lisbon. 

Carlton Gardens : Feb. 6, 1847. 
My dear Seymour, — The Queen should remember that un- 
less she shows herself to be the sovereign of the whole nation, 
she cannot expect the whole nation to regard and love her as 
their sovereign ; and that a throne whose stability rests on the 
point of the bayonet has a very ticklish and uncertain basis. 


Pray preach all these things, and such others as may occur to 
you in the same spirit ; and make the Court and the Govern- 
ment clearly and distinctly understand that they must expect 
no support from England to help them to continue a system of 
misgovernment ; and that England will take care that no sup- 
port for that purpose is given them by Spain. 

Foreign Omce : Feb. 17, 1847, 

1 Moncorvo has written for full powers to conclude some fresh 
engagement, if necessary, in the event of Don Miguel's returning 
to Portugal ; but pray warn the Court against giving in to the 
delusion that they will by such means obtain aid against the 
Junta and the Liberal party; we shall take uncommon good 
care to prevent that. If the Queen fears Don Miguel, she must 
make haste to make up matters with the Junta, and to be able 
to unite all the parties who are for constitutional government 
in a compact band against the adherents of Don Miguel. If 
Portugal is to be governed despotically and by sword and bayonet, 
a 'man is as good as a woman for such purpose, and it matters 
little whether the despot is called by one Christian name or 
another. Pray make this very civilly to be understood by the 
King and Queen; and endeavour also to explain to them in 
courtly terms that the sending off the Torres Vedras prisoners 
to the coast of Africa 1 has done the Queen irreparable injury in 
public opinion here ; and if it turns out that they are sent to a 
milder destination, you may observe how unfortunate it is that 
the Queen should have incurred unnecessarily the odium of a 
severity which she did not mean to inflict. 

I hope and trust "that Diez will be shipped off too ; but 
the * evil that men do lives after them/ and the mischief done 
by Diez will continue to be felt long after he has re-crossed the 
Bay of Biscay. It will be something gained, however, not to 
have such an evil counsellor always at the Eoyal ear; and 
better advisers will have more chance of swaying decisions upon 
*ew events as they arise. 

I am inclined to think that Miguel has no intention at 
present of going to Portugal, and that he will not do so until, 
and unless, there is a considerable force in the field under his 
banners. He came overland from Italy as servant to a Captain 
Jkanett, and arrived here on the 2nd inst. from Calais. 

1 They had capitulated on honourable terms, but were shipped off to 


c 2 


Foreign Office: Feb. 2G f 1847. 

I wish you to press in the strongest manner upon the 
Queen and King, and on any of the people about them who may 
be worth talking to, that it becomes every day more and more 
absolutely necessary for them to make overtures to the Junta, 
and to come to some amicable settlement, so as to put an end to 
the civil war. TeU them plainly that if they speculate upon a 
Miguelite insurrection, to bring in foreign troops to put down 
the Junta, they deceive themselves. We shall take good care 
that any measures to be adopted against Miguel, if he should 
return to Portugal, which he will probably not do, shall not 
be perverted into an interference between the Camarilla and 
Junta, between whom in reality the civil war is waged. 

Tell them as to our guaranteeing a loan, they might as well 
ask us to give them a slice of the moon. 

The only way in which the Queen can make herself strong 
against Miguel is by rallying again round her that portion of 
her subjects by whose exertions, devotion, and sacrifices she was 
placed upon the throne ; but if the Constitution on which she 
rode in triumph is to be abrogated, and despotism is to be set 
up in its stead, such of the Portuguese who are for despotism 
will naturally say that it is Miguel, and not Maria, who is best 
entitled to be their despotic sovereign. 

In the following Memorandum, Lord Palmerston 
puts on record the views which were afterwards embodied 
in the formal Convention of May, made between Eng- 
land, France, Spain and Portugal: — 

Carlton Gardens : March 25, 1847. 

I entirely concur in the view taken by Lord John Russell f 
of the nature of the present state of affairs in Portugal, and of 
the bearing of the letter and spirit of the Quadruple Treaty 
upon that state of things ; and I am decidedly of opinion with 
him, that ' there is at present no case for interference, either by 
the letter or the spirit of the Quadruple Treaty/ 

But it may be argued, by those who ask for interference, 
that there may be ground for such interference, independently 
of that treaty, upon general principles of policy, and not in 
virtue of any anterior engagements. The Quadruple Treaty 
itself was, it may be said, the record of a determination taken 
upon general grounds of policy, and was not the fulfilment of 


Any anterior engagement ; and the question may be asked, is 
there now a sufficient reason for interfering by force of arms in 
the civil war in Portugal, on grounds of general policy, and 
without reference to any anterior engagements 1 

It is acknowledged by writers on the Law of Nations that, 
when civil mr has been regularly established in any country, 
and when tne nation has been divided into two contending 
armies, and has been marshalled in two opposing camps, foreign 
States may treat the conflicting parties in the same manner as if 
they were two separate nations ; and may allowably side with 
one or the other party in the civil war, as they would with one 
or the other belligerent in a war between two independent 
nations. The right to do so is acknowledged to exist in all 
such cases; the expediency of doing so must depend on the 
-circumstances of each particular case. 

The decision of any third party in such a case must depend 
upon the answer which it could give to two questions — First, 
Is the cause of the party whose side we think of taking, a just 
one 1 Secondly, Is it for our interest to give that just cause 
active assistance 1 

Now, in the case of a civil war which originates in a dis- 
puted succession, both of these questions may generally be 
answered without difficulty, either one way or the other. The 
Government of a foreign State may easily make up its mind as 
to which party is right in regard to a disputed succession, 
because the facts upon which the decision is to turn are known 
as well out of the country where the dispute exists as in it; and 
the interest which such foreign Government may have in the 
matter can be easily appreciated. Such was the case out of 
which the Quadruple Treaty arose. The civil war arose out of 
a disputed succession in Portugal and in Spain ; and the inte- 
rest which England had in the matter was a matter of compara- 
tively plain and simple calculation. 

But it is different when a civil war arises out of a contest 
between political parties in a country, who differ in regard to 
principles and forms of government, and who, without pretend- 
ing to change the reigning dynasty, stand up for different 
systems of internal organisation. 

It is more difficult, in such a case, for the Government of 
another country to pronounce with certainty that either party 
in such a civil war is absolutely in the right ; and when the 
struggle for conflicting systems of government is mixed up with 
mutual accusations of illegal or unconstitutional proceedings. 


the task of judging between them is rendered still more difficult* 
In such a case, too, it is far less easy to answer the second of the 
above-mentioned questions, even after having formed an opinion 
on the first ; for, supposing the right to be pretty clearly on 
one side or the other, there are a vast number of considerations 
to be taken into account before a foreign Government could 
decidedly determine that it was for its well-understood interests 
to interfere by force of arms. But this is the present case of 
Portugal ; and there would be much difficulty for the English 
Government to answer the two foregoing questions affirmatively 
in favour of the Queen of Portugal. At the same time, England 
has a great interest in the welfare of Portugal as a State ; and 
the present course of events seems likely to ruin Portugal for a 
long time to come as a European Power. 

Is there, then, any way open for England by which, with- 
out violating principles on which her foreign policy has always 
been founded, and without taking steps which would make 
enemies of the majority of the Portuguese nation, she might 
speedily put an end to this disastrous war 1 

England has offered the Queen of Portugal mediation 
between her Government and the Junta; the offer has been 
declined, because Marshal Saldanha does not choose the war to- 
end by negotiation and reconcilement, and because he insists 
upon it that what is plainly the minority of the nation shall, by 
aid of a Spanish force, be enabled to crush the majority. But 
such an end would not be lasting ; the defeated majority would 
wait their opportunity, and, whenever a party sympathising 
with them should rise to power in Spain, they would again try 
the fate of arms in Portugal. Saldanha's plan is, therefore, 
objectionable in policy, as well as in principle. 

But might not the English Government renew its offer; 
but giving to its offer the character of arbitration rather than 
of mediation 1 Might some such communication as the following 
be made to the Queen ? — The course you are following is fatal, 
end as it may ; for it is evident that it will not end in your 
Majesty's triumph over the Junta and their adherents, by your 
own means. England is your ancient ally, and is bound to 
come to your aid in times of difficulty and danger. She is ready 
to do so now ; but you must allow her to prescribe for Portugal 
such remedies as her disorders require. We demand, therefore, 
of you carte blanclie as to the offers which we require you to 
authorise us to make in your name to your revolted subjects. 
These offers, however, we intend to be generally these : General 


annesty for all who shall tender their submission on or before a 
specified day ; such amnesty, of course, to include retention of 
titles, honours, and property ; and of military commissions, 
either on full or half-pay, for officers, according to the discretion 
of the Government ; and restoration to the Queen's service for 
such non-commissioned officers and privates as choose to be so 
restored. Some few, and very few — probably not above ten — of 
the leading members of the Junta to retire for two or three 
yearn from Portugal. A new Ministry to be formed, consisting 
of men belonging neither to' the Junta nor to the Cabral 
party. All edicts by which the Constitution has, in any of 
its parts, or in the whole, been suspended, to be immediately 
rescinded, and the Constitution, as it stood before the 6th of 
October last, to be immediately restored. The Cortes to be 
summoned to meet on some specified day, not too distant ; and 
the elections to take place at a proper interval before their 
meeting. M. Diez to leave Portugal by the very next packet ; 
and the system of Camarilla Government to be for ever left off. 
If the Junta should agree to these terms, the civil war would 
be over; and the fair and just demands of the Portuguese 
nation would be satisfied. The Junta, therefore, might be told, 
when those conditions were proposed to them, that if they should 
refuse them, the British Government would then be prepared 
to take an active part in favour of the Queen, and would join 
its forces to hers in order to restore peace to Portugal. Of 
course, in such case, the British Government must, however 
inconvenient it might be to do so, guarantee to the Junta the 
faithful performance of these conditions by the Queen; and 
probably there would, in such a case, be no difficulty in en- 
forcing their execution. There can be little doubt that such a 
course would put an end to the war in a fortnight after it was 
resolved upon. 

If the Queen should say that she could not adopt such a 
plan, because Saldanha would resign, the answer would be: 
That plan would render his resignation a matter of indifference ; 
but we will offer you Colonel Wylde to take his place at once, 
or Colonel Wylde shall be Chef d'Etat-Major, to assist, with his 
skill and judgment, any Portuguese General whom you may 
place in nominal command. 

If the civil war could be tenninated in this manner, by 
England alone, without Spanish or French interference, the 
honour of the Queen would be saved, the liberties of the Por- 
tuguese nation would be respected, and the tie between England 


and Portugal would remain unbroken. The despatches received 
this afternoon, from Lisbon and Oporto, seem to show the 
urgency of some energetic measure for putting an end to the 
calamities with which Portugal is now afflicted. 


Foreign Office : April 3, 1847. 

My dear Seymour, — I send you instructions which I hope 
will put an end to the civil war. The only difficulty which I 
anticipate will be with the Queen, and with the people who 
govern her without her knowing it. But the recent change of 
Ministers at Madrid will probably help us, 1 because if the new 
Ministers have any predilections towards Portugal, I should 
think it might be rather towards Oporto than towards Lisbon. 
At all events, we may be pretty sure that they will not let their 
troops enter Portugal without our consent, and, therefore, the 
Queen of Portugal must feel that her chances of assistance from 
Spain are much lessened, if not extinct. I trust she will agree 
to our terms. If she does not, we must rest upon our oars, and 
wait till one side or the other is fairly worn out by fatigue and 

I say in my despatch that the amnesty ought to be full and 
general ; and you should try all you can to get it made so. The 
Queen must be made to understand that we are greatly stretch- 
ing our established principles of foreign policy by engaging to 
coerce the Junta in any case, and that unless she gives us the 
broadest possible ground to take our stand upon, we could not 
justify our course to Parliament and the country; and therefore 
she ought to make the amnesty without exception. 

There certainly was little in the conduct of the 
British Foreign Office compatible with the principle of 
non-intervention, and it was only on the ground that 
we were saving the Sovereign from ruin, and the country 
from confusion, and establishing something like a 
system of liberality, moderation, and equity, that we 
could justify our course ; but if we did that, we might 
fairly contend that we did justify it, considering our 
peculiar relations with Portugal, and admitting that 
States, like individuals, have duties which may inspire 
them with an interest in their neighbours' welfare. 

1 The Pacheco Government. 


The Portuguese Government, however, as the next letter 
shows, raised difficulties which were unworthy of them, 
and fitting only the character of men who were being 
saved in spite of themselves. 

F. 0. ? April 30, 1847. 

My dear Normanby, — Our monetary affairs look better ; 
panic is subsiding, and the funds rising ; and the notion, which 
seems well founded, that the Emperor of Russia is going to 
invest a few millions sterling of his hoardings in our funds has 
had a cheering effect in the City to-day. 

You will see that the Queen of Portugal, or rather her 
advisers, stand out about sending a dozen men to live at the 
expense of the Portuguese Government for six months at Paris. 
If the subject-matter were less serious, one should call this 
childish. It is infatuation. They seem determined to put the 
throne of the Queen upon the result of a battle. If they have 
the best of the fight, they will not essentially mend their position, 
and if they have the worst of it, the Queen will be in great peril ; 
and at all events, if saved by us, will undergo the humiliation 
of submitting, after defeat, to terms which, before the battle, 
she might have worn the appearance of imposing. If we were 
merely messengers between the Government and the Junta, we 
should willingly have conveyed the Queen's demand for the 
temporary banishment of the sixteen or eighteen persons in 
question, but we had taken the resolution to combine with 
France and Spain to compel the Junta to submit, on the terms 
to be announced to them. It was necessary that we should be 
careful that the terms were such that a refusal of the Junta to 
agree to them would justify us and our allies in undertaking the 
conquest of Portugal, for such the compelling operation would 
be in the present temper of the Portuguese ; and whether that 
conquest might be difficult or easy, whether a short or a long 
operation, it would be an undertaking to which heavy responsi- 
bility would necessarily attach, and which the English Govern- 
ment at least ought to be able to justify to Parliament and to 
the world. Now we think that, supposing, as is probable, that 
the Junta should agree to submit on the terms offered them, 
provided the amnesty were general, but should refuse to consent 
to their own banishment, the expulsion for six months of a 
dozen and a half of men would not be an object of sufficient im- 
portance to justify the conquest and subjugation of Portugal in 
order to attain it. 


Firmness, however, carried the day, as it usually 
does when it has right on its side. 

F. 0. : May 6, 1847. 

My dear Seymour, — We have received your despatches, 
giving us an account of the Queen's acceptance of our terms. I 
am delighted ; it is indeed good news, and I trust we shall soon 
hear that the Junta have accepted also, and that this calamitous 
civil war has been brought to a close. 

The Cortes ought to meet as soon as the preliminary arrange- 
ments can be made for it, and the sooner the Queen can substi- 
tute tongues for muskets, as instruments of civil and political 
strife, the better for her and her kingdom. 

Saldanha's army is full of Cabralist officers. It is not very 
likely that Saldanha and his officers should attempt any prank, 
and fall back towards Lisbon, to coerce the Queen, and prevent 
her from acceding to our terms ; but if he were to do so, be 
might be told that we will coerce him just as readily as the 
Junta, and that he had better take care what he is about. 

The British fleet was now directed to protect the 
Queen of Portugal's Government from an attack by the 
Viscount Sa da Bandiera, or any other of the leaders 
of the ^Revolutionary party. But Lord Palmerston con- 
sidered the desired work was only half done so long 
as the constitution was dormant, and Parliamentary 
government not firmly re-established. 

C. G. : May 26, 1847. 

My dear Seymour, — I hope you will not have had occasion 
to employ force to protect Lisbon from attack by Sa da Bandiera : 
but if it has become necessary, I have no doubt it will have 
been done with effect, and the means at Sir William Parker's 
disposal will have proved amply sufficient. As to the demands 
of the Junta, we must be as firm in resisting any unreasonable 
pretentions of theirs as we were in refusing to comply with the 
overstrained expectations of the Court. Napier has been ap- 
pointed to the St. Vincent, that he may go to Lisbon and take 
the command there when Parker moves on to the Mediter- 
ranean. We want to collect a larger force within that sea than 
we now have there ; and with Parker and Napier, both with their 
flags flying there and thereabouts, we shall probably have Join- 
ville on his good behaviour. 


C, G. : June 13, 1847. 

Nothing can be more satisfactory than the course of things 
in [Portugal, as far as we have hitherto learned them, and I 
trust that by this time the Junta will have submitted, and 
Bandiera also, and that the people in Algarve and in the other 
provinces having followed the example thus set them, the civil 
war will have become completely ended, and tranquillity will 
have been entirely restored. Now then comes the time for 
keeping a tight hand on the Portuguese Government, as to 
the faithful and immediate execution of the four conditions, 
which they must not, under any pretence whatever, evade. 
The men now in power will try to put off the elections and 
the meeting of the Cortes, because they will fear that the 
elections will go against them, and that the majority in the 
Cortes, being for the Liberal party, will turn them out, and put 
another set of men in. But to this they must make their minds 
up. What we have intended to do, and what the Portuguese 
Government is pledged to us to do, is to transfer from the field 
of battle to the floor of Parliament the conflict of political 
parties in Portugal. The people, or at least a large portion of 
them, said they had grievances which required redress. The 
Queen's Government told them they should have no Parliament 
in which to state and represent those grievances. The reply of 
the people was natural and just : they flew to arms. Driven 
from the hustings and from Parliament, they sought refuge in 
the field. We have said to the Queen's Government that they 
must give back a Parliament, and that then the people must 
lay down their arms. The people have laid down, or are about 
to lay down their arms. The Queen must give back the Parlia- 
ment ; upon this point there must be no mistake. 

C. G. : July 6, 1847. 

I am just come home, at half-past one, from the House of 
Commons, so my letter will not be long. I am glad to find 
that the Oporto Junta have at last given in. This puts an end 
to the civil war for the moment ; whether it will be renewed or 
not depends on the Queen. If she fulfils faithfully her engage- 
ment, and governs in the true spirit of the Constitution, the 
Liberal party may be content with wielding power according to 
law ; and being no longer fearful of being stripped of it, may be 
satisfied without upsetting or attacking the throne. But if the 
Queen breaks faith, or allows herself to follow the lead of the 
Cabral party, she will be, as you said in a former letter, a 


doomed woman. We must try to save her against her will and 
against her tendencies; you cannot therefore be too firm in 
insisting upon the fulfilment both of the letter and spirit of the 
Four Articles. The Torres Vedras prisoners must be sent for 
immediately, and I would rather that an English ship of war 
were sent to fetch them than that they were left to the careless- 
ness and delays of a Portuguese ship of war, such as it probably 
would be, with ostensible orders for despatch, and secret in- 
structions to be slow. I should wish, therefore, that you and 
Parker should determine at once to send off the Sidon, or any 
other vessel of suitable dimensions, which Parker can spare, to 
bring these people back, and the ship should be off immediately. 
She ought to carry out orders open and unsealed, and none 
others, to the Governors of Angola and Benguela, to collect and 
give up all the prisoners at once, in order that they may be 
brought back. A list of them should be sent, and the ship 
should carry medical means for such as may be suffering from 
wounds or sickness, and bedding and other accommodation for 

The honour of the British Crown and the good faith of the 
British Government is pledged to the strict fulfilment of the 
Four Articles, and there must be no exceptions. You will see 
that the tone of the debate last night was not a bit more 
favourable to the Queen, her present Ministers, and the Cabral 
party than the discussion which took place before. Moncorvo 
came to me this morning, and was evidently nettled at the 
things which were said, but I told him that Parliamentary pri- 
vilege has no limit. 

Portugal was not the only case in which — non- 
intervention being laid down as the Whig rule — inter- 
vention was the exception. The war between Monte 
Video and Buenos Ayres had long been the curse of 
La Plata, and not only injurious to the belligerents 
themselves but to the trade of the world. The Speech 
from the Throne, while Sir Eobert Peel was still in 
office, announced an alliance between the French and 
English Governments for the purpose of suppressing it. 
This alliance was maintained by Sir Eobert' s successor, 
although Lord Palmerston clearly intimated to the 
French that the game of Algiers was not to be played 
over again in the river Plate ; and, though the agents of 


the two Governments differed wherever their instruc- 
tions enabled them to differ — the French showing a 
decided partiality for the Monte Videans — the final 
result was successful, and peace and commerce once 
more expanded their wings in that quarter of the 

In 1834 Prince Talleyrand had incidentally re- 
marked to Lord Palmerston that Spain had always 
been to France in the same relation which Portugal 
had stood to England. Monsieur Guizot is known to 
have repeated the same sentiment in 1847, and, further, 
to have indicated that such close dependence was one 
of the principles of French foreign policy. It is not, 
therefore, a matter of wonder that the prospect of the 
succession of the Infanta with the Due de Montpensier 
to the throne of Spain alarmed English statesmen, the 
only alternative being Montemolin, son of Don Carlos, 
symbol of absolute monarchy, and condemued before- 
hand by the Quadruple Treaty to be expelled the 
country by foreign forces. Portugal, meanwhile, torn 
by violent factions, offered a sorry prospect to those 
who desired her independent stability. Thus it hap- 
pened that the idea of a union of Spain and Portugal 
under a Portuguese Prince, after the death of the 
Spanish Queen, found some favour. The view taken, 
was that a great free State extending from the Pyrenees 
to Lisbon would in all future times be a counterpoise 
to France, and thus save Belgium and the Ehenish 
provinces from the invading propensities of the French 
democracy. It was also asserted that the Progressists 
in Spain were ready to hold up their hands for the 
Prince of Portugal as a successor to Queen Isabella. 
Lord Palmerston, however, did not at all fall in with 
this plan, as is shown in the following letter : — 

Broadlands : August 9, 1847. 

My dear John Russell, — With regard to the possible 
union of Spain with Portugal, or, rather, the incorporation of 
Portugal with Spain, it may be said that if Spain is not now 



by itself a great free State forming a counterpoise to France, 
and securing by that means Belgium and the Rhenish provinces, 
it is not because Spain is not large enough in territory, popu- 
lation, and natural resources ; nor would the acquisition of 
Portugal give her, in this respect, any means the want of which 
cripples her at present, neither can it be said that by such in- 
corporation Spain would be freed from controlling dangers in 
her rear which prevent her from facing France boldly to her 
front ; because as long as Portugal is closely connected with 
England, Portugal would be a help and not a clog to Spain in 
the pursuit of such a policy. There seems no reason, therefore, 
to think that Spain, after having swallowed up Portugal, would 
be a bit more politically independent of France than she is or 
will be, without having so absorbed her neighbour, and, con- 
sequently, the probable result of such an annexation would be, 
that some fine day England would not only find Spain become 
a satellite of France, but would lose all the counterbalancing 
resources which, in such a case, Portugal, as a separate State, 
would afford us. Those advantages are many, great, and 
obvious ; commercial, political, military, and naval, and if we 
were thus to lose them, some of them would not be mere loss, 
but would become formidable weapons of attack against us in 
the hands of a hostile Power. For instance, the naval position 
of the Tagus oU*ght never to be in the hands of any Power, 
whether French or Spanish, which might become hostile to 
England, and it is only by maintaining Portugal in its separate 
existence, and in its intimate and protected state of alliance 
with England, that we can be sure of having the Tagus as & 
friendly instead of its being a hostile naval station. Only fancy 
for a moment Portugal forming part of Spain, and Spain led 
away by France into war with England, and what would be 
our naval condition with all the ports from Calais to Marseilles 
hostile to us, St. Malo, Cherbourg, Brest, Rochefort, Corunna, 
Vigo, the Tagus, Cadiz, Carthagena, Port Mahon, Toulon, and 
with nothing between us and Malta but Gibraltar, the capture 
of which would be the bait which France would hold out to 
Spain to induce her to go to war with us. If, on the contrary, 
the Tagus were at our command, we should occupy an inter- 
mediate position greatly impeding the naval movements of 
France and Spain. Perhaps, if the scheme of an Iberian Re- 
public could be realised, such a State might be more likely to 
remain independent of France than a Spanish Monarchy 
promises to be ; Jbut such a republic would soon fall back to be 


a monarchy, and could not be created without sweeping away 
two existing dynasties allied to us by treaty engagements, and 
for which France would certainly take the field. 

Among the other matters which engaged the atten- 
tion of the Foreign Office at this time was the violence 
done by the * Holy Alliance ' to the Eepublic of Cracow. 

In November 1845, a conspiracy was discovered in 
Posen to restore the independence of Poland. An 
advance was made in the early part of the following 
year upon the city of Cracow, and the Senate applied to 
Austria, Prussia, and Bussia for their intervention. 
Austrian troops shortly after occupied the city, but 
were quickly expelled, and Bussian troops, coming to 
their assistance, recaptured it. Although the inde- 
pendence of the Republic had been guaranteed by the 
Treaty of Vienna, the three protecting Powers pro- 
claimed its annexation to Austria in November 1846, 
and thus accomplished the extinction of the last rem- 
nant of Polish, nationality. 

Lord Palmerston says to Lord Normanby : — 

Nov. 10, 1846. 

I have prepared an answer about Cracow, which I shall 
send off to Vienna without waiting for Guizot. Our answer is, 
that we don't admit the necessity of doing what the threo 
Powers are going to do ; and that we deny their competency to 
do it, and protest against it as a clear violation of the Treaty of 
Vienna. It comes very awkwardly at the prasent moment. 
Mettemich has no doubt long intended it, and thinks the time 

Eropitious when England and France have differed, and when 
e thinks each would be willing to gain his support about Spain 
by being easy with him about Cracow. 

Guizot will make a show of resistance, but the fact is that 
even if France and England had been on good terms, they have 
no means of action on the spot in question, and could only have 
prevented the thing by a threat of war, which, however, the 
three Powers would have known we should never utter for tho 
sake of Cracow. The measure is an abominable shame, and 
executed by the most hollow pretences and the most groundless 

I suspect that Prussia consents to it unwillingly; that 


Austria is urged on by her own covetousness and hatred of 
freedom and independence, even in name, and is pushed on by 
Russia, who wants to have an example set, which may here- 
after be quoted by her as an excusing precedent when she 
swallows and assimilates the kingdom of Poland. 

Foreign Office : Jan. 21, 1847. 

My dear Ponsonby, — I have seen Hummelauer and have 
had a preliminary conversation with him and Dietrichstein. 
He is to send me his papers to read. I have told him that if 
he is able to show that Cracow was the source of danger to the 
Austrian dominions, and if I am authorised to publish the 
proofs, that may go far to mitigate public opinion here ; though, 
of course, the question will still remain why the three Powers 
did not previously consult England and France, and the other 
parties to the Treaty of Vienna; and the stronger the case the 
three Powers can make out for the necessity of some alteration 
in the political condition of Cracow, the less reason there was 
for fearing that they should not obtain the consent of those 
other Powers to some reasonable and fair arrangement. 

Dietrichstein, Brunnow, and Bunsen stayed away from the 
House of Lords when the Queen made her speech, and I think 
that they were right, as it might have been unpleasant for them 
to have stood by to hear their Courts taxed with having violated 
a treaty. 1 

During the first Session of 1847, Mr. Hume moved 
a resolution condemning the conduct of Russia, Prussia, 
and Austria in the affair of Cracow, and declaring that 
the payments to Russia by Great Britain on account of 
the Russo-Dutch Loan should be discontinued on ac- 
count of her violation of the Treaty of Vienna without 
any previous communication with this country. A long 
discussion followed, one prominent feature of which was 
an eulogium of the conduct of the three despotic Court* 
by Lord George Bentinck as the leader of the Tory 
party. In a letter to Lord Normanby, Lord Falmerston 

1 * The extinction of the free State of Cracow has appeared to me to 
be so manifest a violation of the Treaty of Vienna, that I have com- 
manded that a protest against that act should be delivered to the 
Courts of Vienna, Petersburg, and Berlin, which were parties to it/ 
(Esctract from Queen's fipcech, January 19, 1847.) 


says of this debate, € Peel made a very good and very 
friendly speech; George Bentinck distinguished him- 
self in his own way, in which he is likely also to extin- 
guish himself as a candidate for office.' Lord Palmerston 
himself spoke very briefly, merely declaring that the 
incorporation of Cracow by Austria was undoubtedly 
a violation of the Treaty of Vienna, and had received 
universal condemnation, but that to meet it by such a 
pecuniary fine upon the Russian Government was, in 
his opinion, neither a legal nor a dignified course of 
action. Mr. Hume, after this, withdrew his motion. 

The following letter ! is quoted because the course 
we should pursue with Asiatic countries has sometimes 
been questioned, and the principle maintained that 
we should treat them exactly as we should European 
states ; that is, according to a policy which they can- 
not understand, and will not appreciate. When their 
notions and usages become European, then we should 
of course deal with them as Europeans ; but as long 
as their notions and usages are Chinese, we must 
treat them as Chinese. The moral nature of these 
Asiatics is the point to be considered, and that is not 
dealt with in treatises on international law : — 

Broadlands : January 9, 1847. 

We shall lose all the vantage ground which we have gained 
by our victories in China, if we take the low tone which seems 
to have been adopted of late by us at Canton. We have given 
the Chinese a most exemplary drubbing, and that brought 
them, not to their senses, because they never were deceived 
as to what we were; but it brought them to leave off the 
system of pretended contempt, under which they had so long 
concealed their fear. They will not forget that drubbing in a 
tuny, unless we set them the example by forgetting it ourselves ; 
and we must take especial care not to descend from the rela- 
tive position which we have acquired. If we maintain that 
position morally by the force of our intercourse, we shall not 
be obliged to recover it by forcible acts ; but if we permit the 
Chinese, either at Canton or elsewhere, to resume, as they will, 

1 To Sir John Davis. 


no doubt, be always endeavouring to do, their former tone of 
affected superiority, we shall very soon be compelled to come to 
blows with them again. 

Of course we ought — and, by we, I mean all the English 
in China — to abstain from giving the Chinese any ground of 
complaint, and much more from anything like provocation or 
affront ; but we must stop on the very threshold any attempt 
on their part to treat us otherwise than as their equals, and 
we must make them all clearly understand, though in the 
civillest terms, that our treaty rights must be respected, unless 
they choose to have their seaports knocked about their ears. 
The Chinese must learn and be convinced that if they attack 
our people and our factories they will be shot ; and that if they 
illtreat innocent Englishmen who are quietly exercising their 
treaty right of walking about the streets of Canton, they will 
be punished. So far from objecting to the armed association, 
I think it a wise security against the necessity of using force. 
Depend upon it, that the best way of keeping any men quiet is 
to let them see that you are able and determined to repel force 
by force ; and the Chinese are not in the least different in this 
respect from the rest of mankind. 

The Irish famine occupied so entirely the attention 
of the country and of Parliament that little else was 
debated in the House of Commons during the session 
of 1847. The subject of education, however, was taken 
up by the Government, but they had to encounter the 
jealousy which various Dissenting bodies felt at any 
further sum being placed under the control of the 
Established Church. 

When, therefore, Lord John Bussell proposed an 
additional grant of 100,000/., Mr. Duncombe moved an 
amendment, not, as he stated, from want of confidence 
in Her Majesty's Government, but from distrust in the 
Committee of Privy Council, who were to administer 
the grant. In spite of strong opposition the vote was 
carried, and Lord Palmerston comments on this result 
and on the general state of parties as follows : — l 

You will have been as much surprised and pleased as we 
have been at the division last night about the Education question. 

1 To Lord Normanby, April 23, 1847. 


It does great honour to the House that, with a general election 
coming on, and with a combination of Dissenters against our 
measure, there should have been such an overwhelming majo- 
rity in favour of it ; and it is creditable to the Government that 
the measure which it has proposed should have been intrinsi- 
cally so good, that the great body of the House should have 
braved the displeasure of their constituents from approval of 
the scheme. I do not suppose that the result of last night will 
be equally gratifying to Louis Philippe and Guizot. It must 
convince them, however, that, for the present, we are the only 
Government that can be found to stand; and, unless I am 
much deceived, the general election will not materially alter 
that state of things. 

Peel seems to have made up his mind that for a year or 
two he cannot hope to form a party, and that he must give 
people a certain time to forget the events of last year ; l in the 
meanwhile, it is evident that he does not wish that any other 
Government should be formed out of the people on his side of 
the House, because of that Government he would not be a 
member. For these reasons, and also because he sincerely 
thinks it best that we should, for the present, remain in, he 
gives us very cordial support, as far as he can, without losing his 
independent position. Graham 2 — who sits up under his old 
pillar, and never comes down to Peel's bench, even for personal 
communication — seems to keep himself aloof from everybody, 
and to hold himself free to act according to circumstances ; but, 
as yet, he is not considered as the head of any party. George 
Bentinck has entirely broken down as a candidate for minis- 
terial position ; and thus we are left masters of the field, not 
only on account of our own merits, which, though we say it 
ourselves, are great, but by virtue of the absence of any efficient 

The battles of Moodkee, Sobraon, and Goojerat had 
given us possession of the Puujaub. The question 
arose whether we were to annex it. Lord Palmerston's 
views as to this, and the opinions of Lord Hardinge 
and the Duke of Wellington, are still interesting, as 
bearing on the relations of England and Russia in the 

1 Repeal of the Corn Laws. 

2 Sir James Graham had been Home Secretary under Sir Robert Peel. 

i> 2 


Carlton Gardens : Jane 9, 1847. 

My dear John Russell, — I return you Hardinge's letter 
and the Duke of Wellington's. These two generals are great 
military authorities ; but the Duke is a far greater one than 
Hardinge, of whose judgment I have no opinion, though his 
bravery in the field is undoubted. Both seem to agree in 
thinking that the Russians cannot conquer India, and in this 
opinion they are clearly right. I do not think, however, that 
Hardinge has demonstrated that the Russians might not give 
us much trouble and put us to much expense in India. 

I. would observe that Hardinge seems to think Scinde of 
no value in a military point of view, whereas the Duke con- 
siders the possession of it as a great security ; and, as regards 
the Funjaub, Hardinge is evidently against our possessing it, 
while, on the other hand, he says that the only gate through 
which an invader could attack India is through the Khyber Pass, 
which cannot be occupied and defended by us unless we do 
possess the Punjaub ; and he shows the necessity for this, be- 
cause he says that it is only to the eastward of the Chenab that 
a large army could find subsistence. It is only there, conse- 
quently, that we could station a large army ; and, therefore, as 
the Khyber Pass, being narrow, could be penetrated by only one 
column at a time, our best means of stopping an invading 
enemy would be either to occupy the pass with a small force 
beforehand, or to station a small force at the outlet of the pass, 
to attack in succession the heads of the columns of march as 
they might open out into the plain. But, to do this, we must 
have the country up to the pass ; for we could not in such a 
case risk a small force three hundred miles from our main body 
through a country which, not being ours, might at the moment 
become hostile. If the Khyber Pass is the only gate to India, 
and if it is there we are to defend India, we ought to have, and 
must have, military occupation of the country up to that gate ; 
otherwise the pass is of no more defensive value to us than any 
other defile which the invaders would have to pass between As- 
trabad and Cabul. The advance of a Russian army is, however, 
far from being as impossible as Hardinge seems to think it. 
Persia must, I fear, now be looked upon as an advanced post 
for Russia, whenever she chooses to make use of it. She will 
command it either by overpowering force or by bribing the 
State by prospects of acquisitions in Afghanistan. There would 
be no insurmountable difficulty to prevent Russia from assem- 
bling a considerable force at Astrabad. The roads through 


Persia are good, and the Caspian gives additional facilities. 
From Astrabad through Afghanistan are veiy practicable mili- 
tary roads ; and the distance from Astrabad to Attock is not 
much, if at all, more than eight hundred miles, considerably 
less than the distance from Attock to Calcutta. 

A Russian force in occupation of Afghanistan might not 
be able to march to Calcutta, but it might convert Afghanistan 
into the advanced post of Russia, instead of that advanced post 
being in Persia ; and, whatever Hardinge may say of the secu- 
rity of the rest of our frontier, you would find in such case a 
very restless spirit displayed by the Burmese, by the Nepaulese, 
and by all the unincorporated States scattered about the surface 
of our Indian possessions. These things would lead to great 
expense, would require great efforts, and might create consider- 
able damage. The best method of preventing these embarrass- 
ments seems to be to take up such a military position on the 
frontier, not in posse, as Hardinge would do, but in esse, as 
would make it plain to everybody that we could not be taken 
by surprise ; that the decisive position could neither be snatched 
from us by a rapid movement, nor be wrested from us by a 
forcible assault. 

Of course there are further considerations to which Har- 
dinge does not advert, namely, that while Russia was thus 
marching on India, we should not be idle in Europe ; but still 
Russia is strong in her European defences, whether in the 
Baltic or in the Black Sea, and it is well that we should be able 
to defend India in Asia, as well as in Europe. 

Extract from Letter of Lord Hardinge, dated Simla, 

April 20, 1847. 

As regards the intentions of Russia, I am confident no 
hostile attempt will be made. They are confined to the exten- 
sion of her trade with China and parts of Central Asia. A 
Russian force can only enter India through Afghanistan and 
by the Khyber Pass. 

A Persian and Afghan force intermixed with Russians, on 
the same principle as in our Indian Army, would be required, 
on the modern system of war, to be supported by a large and 
well-equipped field-train of artillery, with all its numerous 
stores. This modern necessity entails great difficulty in moving 
an army through a sterile and mountainous country. The more 
you attempt to make your army efficient in artillery in such 


countries, the greater becomes your difficulty of rapidly moving- 

If Russia could afford the means of getting through the 
Khyber Pass with a well-equipped army, it must be an operation 
of time, and could not be disguised. The concentration of our 
military means would be comparatively easy. We have now 
50,000 men and 100 field pieces, and 100 siege guns, with 500 
rounds a gun, on this frontier. We should have the choice of 
meeting this Russian army where we pleased. Peshawur is a 
very small and poor district; Attock still more; and the 
country between the Indus and the Jehun, or Hydaspes, is so 
poor and barren it could not support an army. Between the 
Jehun and the Chenab, or Acesines, the case is the same, and 
it is only on this side, between the Chenab and the Sutlej, that 
a large army could be subsisted, with rivers intersecting the 
approach at right angles, of which we have no idea in Europe, 
one, two, and even six and seven miles broad, from June till 
October, when the snow melts and the rain falls, running five 
or six knots an hour. 

Look at the map and you will find, from our new frontier 
on the Byar at Noorpor, passing to the eastward along the 
mountains which now bring us into contact with Chinese Tar- 
tary at Spitti, and the Nepaul hills, and thence by the Tennas- 
serim provinces to the Straits at Singapoor, that there is no 
enemy which can give this Government any uneasiness by an 
external attack for a distance of nearly 6,000 miles of land 

Passing from Noorpoor to the westward, down to Kurra- 
chee on the sea, the only entrance into India is by the Khyber 
Pass. No general in his senses would attack India through the 
Bolan Pass for the sake of occupying Scinde, having then an 
impassable desert before him, or a flank movement of 700 miles 
through Bhawulpoor before he could reach this frontier. 

Consequently, any attack on India is limited to a space of 
about 100 miles on the Sutlej, from Ferozepore to Rampoor. 
For 100 miles from Ferozepore down to Kurrachee no hostile 
attack could be made. Our coast, from Kurrachee down to the 
Straits, is between 5,000 and 6,000 miles. The land frontier 
from Kurrachee to the Straits, about 7,000 miles. Therefore, 
out of 13,000 miles of sea and land frontier by which the em- 
pire is encircled, the only practicable attack is confined to 100 
miles between Ferozepore and the foot of the hills at Rampoor, 
or, if you please, the Khyber Pass, 300 miles in advance of the 


If the Indus had turned out to be a navigable river, and 
that our military communications for troops and stores could 
have been secured from Kurrachee by the Indus, the Punjaub 
would have been of some military value ; but that route has 
failed us, and there is no real military communication between 
this frontier and Scinde. However, I won't enter into the 
question of the annexation of the Punjaub. I have shown you 
that no external attack of any importance can be made except 
for 100 miles on the Sutlej ; and, lastly, I give you my opinion 
that this entrance by the Khyber Pass for a Russian army with 
all the equipments and munitions of war is very nearly as im- 
practicable as any other of the entrances into India. 

The Afghan war has solved the problem of the possibility 
of Russian invasion. Afghanistan has no resources : it is by 
nature too poor to feed a large invading army; and even if 
such an army could reach the Indus, our British means are at 
all times ample to overwhelm it. 

The schemes of Russia are restricted, I should say, to the 
extension of her trading speculations. She now supplies Chinese 
Tartary, Thibet, Cashmere, and Turkestan with broadcloths, 
velvets, leather, hardware, <fcc, and receives shawls and shawl 
wool, tin, furs, &c, in return. We should, in addition to what 
Russia supplies, export opium, sugar, indigo, and English cotton 

Here you have no cause for apprehension. Let us get rid 
of a nine-years' annual deficit by a surplus ; pay off the five per 
cents. ; improve the country — and you may do what you like ; 
but as to a Russian invasion of India, depend upon it, my dear 
Lord, that it is a political nightmare. 

Extract of Letter from Duke of Wellington, dated Windsor 

Castle, June 3, 1847. 

' Lord Hardinge is quite correct in his account and descrip- 
tion of the frontier. You may rely upon it that you have 
nothing to apprehend from Russia in that quarter. The pos- 
session of Scinde is a great security. , 

The corrupt system of government, which was ruin- 
ing the monarchy in France, produced a scandal, to 
which reference is made in the following letters. 
General Cubieres was a Peer of France, and M. Teste 
was Minister of Public Works. In order to obtain a 


concession of a salt mine for a company in which he 
was interested, the General had given large bribes to 
the Minister. In July a State trial took place with 
reference to these transactions, and the culprits were 
condemned to fine and imprisonment. Meanwhile, 
however, M. Teste had attempted suicide by placing a 
pistol to his mouth, which missed fire. He then dis- 
charged a second, so close to his breast that the ball 
did not penetrate, but fell to the ground, leaving only 
a bruise. Lord Palmerston seems to have had his 
doubts about the intensity of M. Teste's desire to die. 

F. O. : May 7, 1847. 

My dear Normanby, — These revelations about Cubieres 
and Teste will, no doubt, lead to other disclosures of a similar 
kind, because such exposures follow each other as murders do 
in this country ; and if the system by which majorities have 
hitherto been obtained is laid bare, either the Ministry must 
fall by public disrespect for it, or it will be weakened by the 
cessation of the abuses upon which it lived. In either way, 
these things must be a blow to Guizot and the Philippine system. 

What dashing fellows our cousins Transatlantic are ! Who 
would have thought of Ulloa 1 surrendering without being at- 
tacked ? I remember a Greek line which says that " silver spears 
will conquer all things." No doubt the fort was a little bom- 
barded with dollars while they were shelling the town. The 
Yankees will end by becoming masters of the greater part of 
Mexico. We cannot prevent it without going to war with the 
United States ; and to go to war with them for such a set of 
people as the Mexicans would not go down with the House of 
Commons in the best of times, and least of all just now. If the 
Union becomes very large, it will either split, or else the multi- 
tude of conflicting interests which will belong to its various 
component parts will be an obstacle to any unnecessary war with 
a great maritime Power and wealthy customer like England. 
Moreover, a great extent of fine land to the south will render 
the Americans less anxious to strip us of Canada. I hear that 
they are already become careless about Oregon, satisfied with 
having the ownership. 

1 The fortress of St. John d'Ulloa, which commanded the town of 
Vera Cruz. 


C. G. : July 16, 1847. 

Do you think Teste's attempted suicide was a reality, or 
anything got up for effect 1 It looks like the latter. In former 
times, a Sir William Meadows, in our service, was brought into 
trouble about some affairs of the same kind which had happened 
in India, and he discharged a pistol at his own head ; the ball 
grazed his forehead, and Mends who heard the report rushed in 
and found him bathing his forehead in cold water ; and he said, 
in reply to inquiries, that he had had an affair of honour with 
himself, and having stood the shot, he had declared himself 
satisfied. But, though Teste has escaped the shot, the Ministry 
has had one between wind and water, which, sooner or later, 
must tell ; and even if it tells in no other way than by making 
bribery more difficult, because more dangerous, it will in that 
way weaken a Government which relies so much upon such 
methods for its support. I get on very agreeably with Broglie, 
but as yet we have only talked about Switzerland and Greece, 
in regard to both of which we 'agree to differ.' We shall 
probably wind up by Thursday or Friday of next week, then 
dissolve, and then comes the tug of war. It is said we are to 
have in the new Parliament an absolute majority of our own of 
twenty to thirty out of the whole House. Be this as it may, 
we shall certainly win many seats. 

Parliament was dissolved on July 23. There was 
little enthusiasm on either side during the general 
election which followed. The Free Trade question 
appeared settled ; and though a more vigorous policy 
was anticipated from a Russell than from a Melbourne 
Administration, no great organic changes were expected 
from it. On the other hand, the remnants of the Con- 
servative party had nothing to hold out beyond vague 
professions of attachment to our ancient institutions. 
In this absence of party feeling the men in possession 
gained a few votes, although among their nominal sup- 
porters were many independent members in no way 
pledged to go with the Government if they disapproved 
of its measures. 




Loed Minto, as has been stated above, went about this 
time to Italy, on a mission which deserves some notice. 
The whole land was in a ferment, and was clamouring 
for liberal institutions. Sardinia led the way, despite 
the unconcealed disapproval of her Imperial neighbour. 
Tuscany followed, though with laggard steps, and the 
Papal Court suffered for its prostration under the 
general fever by the occupation of Ferrara by Austrian 
forces. Charles Albert at once notified to the Pope his 
readiness to assist him with a Piedmontese army if the 
Imperial troops made any further advance. Meanwhile 
Pius IX., being engaged in administrative reforms, had 
expressed to the English Government a wish to have 
the assistance of some person of rank and experience 
who might aid him by advice, and at the same time 
afford him the moral support of England. Lord Minto 
therefore went off to Rome in November, 1847, with 
directions to visit Turin and Florence on his way. His 
aim was so to represent the English Government as to 
strengthen the authority of the constitutional govern- 
ments in Italy, but he did not profess to believe that 
English mediation or interposition in territorial questions 
was likely to turn to much account. He only thought 
it probable that, by taking a firm and decided line, 
England might enable the wise friends of order and 
freedom to cope in their domestic affairs with the sedi- 
tion of the young Italy and Mazzini firebrands. 

Lord Palmerston's instructions to Lord Minto were, 
first of all, to convey to the King of Sardinia the 


sympathies of the British Government, and the ex- 
pression of its surprise and regret that Austria should 
have intimated the possibility of an entry by her troops 
< upon Sardinian territory, if the King, in the exercise 
of his indisputable rights of sovereignty, should make 
certain organic arrangements within his own dominions 
which would be displeasing to the Government of 
Austria.' Lord Minto was to add that Her Majesty's 
Government had learnt with much pleasure the assur- 
ances of friendly and defensive support which his Sar- 
dinian ' Majesty had recently caused to be conveyed to 
the Pope, and which did great honour to His Majesty 
as a generous Prince and as an Italian Sovereign. 9 

To the Grand Duke of Tuscany Lord Minto was 
instructed to address himself in a tone of encourage- 
ment, urging him to persevere in that independent 
course of enlightened progress which he at that moment 
seemed inclined to pursue. 

You will be at Borne [proceeded Lord Palmerston], not as 
a Minister accredited to the Pope, but as an authentic organ of 
the British Government, enabled to explain its views and to 
declare its sentiments upon events which are now passing in 
Italy, and which, both from their local importance and from 
their bearing on the general interests of Europe, Her Majesty's 
Government are watching with great attention and anxiety. 

Her Majesty's Government are deeply impressed with the 
conviction that it is wise for sovereigns and their governments 
to pursue, in the administration of their affairs, a system of pro- 
gressive improvement ; to apply remedies to such evils as, upon 
examination, they may find to exist, and to remodel, from time 
to time, the ancient institutions of their country, so as to render 
them more suitable to the gradual growth of intelligence and to 
the increasing diffusion of political knowledge ; and Her Ma- 
jesty's Government consider it to be an undeniable truth, that 
if an independent sovereign, in the exercise of his deliberate 
judgment, shall think fit to make within his dominions such 
improvements in the laws and institutions of his country as he 
may think conducive to the welfare of his people, no other 
Government can have any right to attempt to restrain or to 
interfere with such an employment of one of the inherent attri- 
butes of independent sovereignty. 


Lord Palmerston concluded by authorising Lord 
Minto to say ' that Her Majesty's Government would 
not see with indifference any aggression committed 
upon the Eoman territories, with a view to preventing 
the Papal Government from carrying into effect those 
internal improvements which it might think proper to 

Lord Minto was received witli great ovations. At 
Avezzo, Genoa, and other places, he was called upon to 
address the people from the balcony amid flags and 
music. With wise discretion, he usually confined his 
speech to a cry of 'Viva V Indipendenza Italiana!' 
which satisfied the crowds and caused their dispersion, 
to the sound of ' Viva V Italia ! 9 

On reaching Borne he placed himself in communica- 
tion with the Papal Government, so as to carry out his 
instructions. Pio Nono was at this time apparently 
about to enter on a career of progressive and successful 
reform, but Lord Minto was evidently not sanguine as 
to His Holiness's ability 'to ride the whirlwind and 
direct the storm/ Writing home during the early 
troubles of 1848, he says: — 

The Pope is a most amiable, agreeable, and honest man, 
and sincerely pious to boot, which is much for a Pope ; but he 
is not made to drive the State coach. To-day he is in very good 
spirits, although he foresees the clangers of the country, because 
he has recovered a saint's skull which had been sacrilegiously 

The fact is that Pio Nono was at that time, and 
always remained, far more anxious for his power as 
Head of the Catholic Church than for his position as a. 
temporal sovereign ; but the British Government sought 
to turn to account whatever anxiety he might feel in 
his temporal capacity by obtaining, in return for their 
good offices, the exercise of his influence in Ireland to 
second their efforts in the cause of national education, 
and to restrain the lawlessness of the priests. 

In the following letters Lord Palmerston refers to 


the Papal rescript against the newly- established Queen's 
Colleges, and to the fact that agrarian outrages were, 
if not sanctioned, at any rate not condemned by the 
spiritual guides of the people. England had commu- 
nicated, to Austria, as her old ally, her hope that the 
Pope would not be interrupted by foreign force. She 
was also considering the means of opening formal com- 
munications with Borne, and naturally expected mean- 
while a friendly attitude on the part of the Head of 
that Church which had many adherents across the Irish 

F. 0. : October 29, 1847. 

My dear Minto, — Nothing could be better nor, I trust, 
more useful than your negotiations at Turin, upon which I 
have written to you official approvals. That Italian Commer- 
cial League will be an excellent thing if it is placed upon a 
proper footing, commercial and political. 

As to the Austrians, they have been headed, and will not 
break cover towards Italy. Many things have contributed to 
this, but we have had our share in the merit, and were the first 
to set up the view holloa which scared them. The Pope ought 
to feel grateful to us for this, and if he does so, he ought to give 
us some tokens of his thankfulness. I send you a copy of 
Memorandum sent some little time ago by Clarendon for your 
use. It is, in the main, good. There is a little inconsistency 
in the parts, for in one part he assumes that the priests have no 
influence in Ireland, and in another part he assumes that they 
have a great deal. But the fact is so : they have influence and 
they have not; they have it in some things and not in others. 
But we wish to make to the Pope the plain, and simple, and 
reasonable request that he would exert his authority over the 
Irish priesthood, to induce them to abstain from meddling in 
politics, but, on the contrary, to confine themselves to their 
spiritual duties ; and in these duties to exhort their flocks to 
morality, good conduct, obedience to the law, and abstinence 
from acts of violence and crime, and, moreover, to inculcate on 
their flocks the propriety of not only obeying the law them- 
selves, but of aiding honestly and fearlessly in the execution of 
the law, and in the attainment of the ends of justice by faith- 
folly performing their functions, as magistrates, jurymen, and 
witnesses. I disagree entirely with Clarendon as to the expe«- 
diency of advising or inviting the Pope to send any confidential 


agent to Ireland. I should fear that such person, unless very 
well chosen indeed, would be got hold of by McHale rather than 
by Clarendon, and then if his reports were to be unfavourable 
to us, we should have increased our difficulties instead of dimi- 
nishing them. I shall be able to send you by the next messenger 
a Memorandum about the letter which has recently been received 
by McHale from Borne, upon the subject of Irish colleges. 1 
This is an unkind and a most mischievous measure, and was 
little to be expected at the hands of the Pope at the very 
moment that we were stepping out of our way to be of use to 
him. It is an ungrateful return, and can only be explained on 
the supposition that it was extorted by intrigue and false repre- 
sentations made at Home by McHale, and that the Pope acted 
ignorantly and without knowing the mischief he was doing. 
But you should lose no time in making him aware of his mis- 
take, and you should say that if he expects the English Go- 
vernment to be of any use to him, and to take any interest in 
his affairs, he must not strike blows at our interior. You may 
also say that an Act of Parliament will be necessary to enable 
us to establish diplomatic relations with him. Things of this 
kind may have so bad an effect upon public opinion in Tbn gtynA 
as to make it impossible for us to obtain the consent of Parlia- 
ment to any such measure. 

1 « College of the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of the 
Faith, Rome, October 9, 1847. The 8acred Congregation has felt it its 
duty to caution the archbishops and bishops of Ireland against taking 
any part in establishing them. But as it would have wished, before 
some of the prelates had entered into any negotiations with the 
Government for amending the law regarding the aforesaid colleges and 
procuring other measures in their favour, that they had taken the 
opinion of the Holy See, so it doubts not but that, from the profound 
obedience which the prelates of Ireland have invariably exhibited 
towards it, they will retract those things which they have done to the 

* Aboye all things, the Sacred Congregation would deem it advan- 
tageous that the bishops, uniting their exertions, should procure the 
erection in Ireland of such a Catholic academy as the prelates of Bel- 
gium have founded in the city of Louvain. 

' With these things you will, we are sure, comply with the greater 
alacrity since they are in all points in conformity with the judgment 
of our most Holy Lord Pius IX., who lias sanctioned with his appro- 
bation the decision of the Sacred Congregation, and gave to it the 
supreme weight of his authority. 

* J. Phil. Cardinal Fransoni, P.D.P.F. 

'Alexander Barnabo, Pro-Secretary.' 


Commercial distress is lessening, but still severe, and will 
so continue for many months to come. The grain which was 
imported into the United "Kingdom in the first nine months of 
•this year cost in prime cost and freight rather more than twenty- 
six millions sterling. We had to advance upwards of six 
millions for public works in Ireland, and the nation has spent 
this year forty-five millions in railways at home, and upwards 
of ten millions in railways abroad. The wonder is not that we 
are distressed, but that we are not all of us bankrupt. 

The Memorandum on the ' Irish Colleges ' referred 
to in the foregoing letter was as follows : — 

Whether intentionally or ignorantly I know not, but the 
Pope, by his rescript against the Irish colleges, committed a 
hostile, ill-judged, and unnecessary act. It was hostile, because 
he publicly denounced and directed the Roman Catholic 
hierarchy to oppose a measure which had received the sanction 
of the Sovereign and Parliament of England. It was ill-judged, 
because he showed no regard for the opinion of the Roman 
' Catholic prelates and a great proportion of the Roman Catholic 
laity of Ireland, who consider the colleges an important boon, 
and well calculated to supply a want that has been long and 
severely felt, and who are determined not to be deprived of 
institutions from which they expect much good. It has pro- 
duced feelings of resentment and irritation among the Pro- 
testants of Great Britain, and, I may add, among many of the 
Catholics of Ireland, that will not easily be allayed, and that are 
much regretted by all those who desire to soothe animosity be- 
tween the two creeds, and to promote the establishment of 
friendly relations with Rome. 

The Lord Lieutenant was in communication with the 

Primate, Dr. Crolly, with Archbishops Murray and Nicholson. 

Every suggestion of theirs had been scrupulously attended to 

for securing the religious instruction and moral conduct of the 

Roman Catholic students, and in conformity with their wishes 

the statutes were under revision as soon after the long vacation 

as the Presidential Board could assemble. When these facts 

are brought to the knowledge of the Pope, it is hoped that His 

Holiness will see that he has been led into error, and that 

greater circumspection will be desirable in listening to malicious 

and unfounded reports transmitted from Ireland, and which 

We been hitherto too readily believed at Rome. There are 

among the Roman Catholic prelates of Ireland men of great 


intelligence and activity, who lend themselves to political 
agitation, and who seek to obtain the sanction of the Pope's 
authority towards the maintenance of hostile feelings against 
the British Government, and between the Protestants and 
Catholics of the United Kingdom. These men untruly assume 
to speak in the name of the entire hierarchy, and their state- 
ments have in consequence had an importance given them at 
Rome to which they are not entitled. It is probable that by 
this time the Pope has received certain resolutions against the 
colleges, and against the national system of education in the 
name of the archbishop and bishops of Ireland in Synod 
assembled ; but these resolutions were not passed in Synod at 
all. Many of the prelates had left Dublin at the time they were 
framed, and even Archbishop Murray, who was in Dublin, 
never heard of or saw them till he read them in the newspapers, 
when he highly disapproved of them, and felt sure that many of 
his brethren would do the same. His example, among many 
that might be quoted, will show the unscrupulous character of 
certain prelates, and the necessity of receiving with caution any 
facts or opinions put forward by them. The best course for the 
Pope now to pursue is to remain entirely passive until he 
receives further and more correct information. He may rest 
assured that in the establishment of these colleges the British 
Government have had no other object than to supply the best 
possible education to the middle classes in Ireland, and, as a 
consequence of that object, to promote religion and morality 
among the students of different denominations alike. The 
British Government has no ulterior or sinister design, as has 
been most falsely asserted. It uses no disguise. The Lord 
Lieutenant has freely communicated with the Primate, and 
Archbishop Murray has received and acted upon their sugges- 
tions, and will communicate to them the statutes as soon as they 
are revised, and before they are definitively determined upon. 
It may perhaps be desirable, in whatever form Lord Minto 
shall think best, to let the Pope understand that the Roman 
Catholics of Ireland have neither the means nor disposition to 
establish at their own expense such seminaries as are recom- 
mended in the rescript, and that they can only be provided for 
out of the public funds. That a large proportion of the Roman 
Catholic laity are so convinced of the desirableness of these 
colleges, that nothing will prevent them from sending their sons 
there when once they are satisfied that religious instruction is 
duly provided for, and that if the opposition of Dr. McHale and 


otBers should unfortunately prove successful under the supposed 
sanction and authority of the Pope's name against the national 
system of education, by which four hundred thousand children 
are rescued from ignorance and its consequences, the large 
funds annually devoted to this object by the Legislature will 
probably fall under the exclusive management of the Pro- 
testants, by whom a large proportion of these children will be 
educated. For all who are acquainted with Ireland must be 
aware that not even the influence of the priesthood can check 
the uncontrollable desire for education that exists among the 
people. They will greatly prefer to receive it from Catholics, 
but, rather than forego its benefits, they will gladly accept it 
from Protestants. 

November 20, 1847. 

F. 0. : December 3, 1847. 

My dear Minto, — I send you a letter from Clarendon, the 
whole of which you may, I think, read to anybody with whom 
you are in communication on the part of the Pope. But you 
may safely go further than Clarendon has chosen to do, and 
you may confidently assure the Papal authorities that at 
present, in Ireland, misconduct is the rule, and good conduct 
the exception, in the Catholic priests. That they, in a multi- 
tude of cases, are the open, and fearless, and shameless in- 
stigators to disorder, to violence, and murder, and that every 
day and every week the better conducted, who are by con- 
stitution of human nature the most quiet and timid, are being 
scared by their fellow-priests, as well as by their flocks, from a 
perseverance in any efforts to give good counsel and to restrain 
violence and crime. Major Mahon, who was shot the other 
day, was denounced by his priest at the altar the Sunday before 
be was murdered. He might have been murdered all the same 
if the priest had not denounced him, but that denunciation of 
course made all the people in the neighbourhood think the deed 
a holy one instead of a diabolical one. The irritation and ex- 
asperation thence growing up in the public mind against the 
Catholic priesthood is extreme, and scarcely anybody now talks 
of these Irish murders without uttering a fervent wish that a 
dozen priests might be hung forthwith, and the most effectual 
remedy which has been suggested, and which seems the most 
popular, is that whenever a man is murdered in Ireland the 
priest of the parish should be transported. 

In the meanwhile I begin to doubt whether it would be 


prudent at present to bring in our proposed Bill for Legalising 
Diplomatic Intercourse with the Court of Borne. The sectarian 
prejudices which, under any circumstances, would give much 
opposition to such a Bill, but which, in a better state of things, 
we should be able to conquer, would find such sympathy in 
public opinion at present, that our task would be more difficult ; 
however, we do not give up our intention, but must postpone 
its execution till after the Christmas recess. I really believe 
there never has been in modern times, in any country profess- 
ing to be civilised and Christian, nor anywhere out of the cen- 
tral regions of Africa, such a state of crime as now exists in 
Ireland. There is evidently a deliberate and extensive con- 
spiracy among the priest*, and the peasantry to kill off or drive 
away all the proprietors of land, to prevent and deter any of 
their agents from collecting rent, and thus practically to trans- 
fer the land of the country from the landowner to the tenant. 
I trust, however, that some of these murderers will be taken ; 
some indeed have already been apprehended, and if evidence can 
be got against them, the hanging of a dozen of these miscreants 
all in a row may have some effect in deterring others from 
following their example, and if we could but get a priest in the 
lot it would be like a ptarmigan in a bag of grouse, or a pied 
or ring-necked pheasant in a battue. 

Extract from Letter of Earl of Clarendon f dated V. R. Lodge, 

November 26, 1847. 

McHale is a dangerous demagogue, whose proceedings as 
a citizen, and irrespective of their ecclesiastical indecorum, no 
Government in the world but ours would tolerate. Political 
agitation, popular elections, and inflammatory publications ate 
his favourite pursuits. His object seems to be to set the people 
against their rulers ; and if he could have his way their ignor- 
ance and their turbulence would be perpetual, and throughout 
his province those priests have the greatest share of his favour 
who most promote his sinister designs. The majority of the 
bishops dislike his proceedings and his character, but they suc- 
cumb because he is audacious and overbearing, and they are 
afraid of making public the grave dissensions that exist among 
the Roman Catholic hierarchy. Such a man, however, and such 
a bitter opponent of the British Government and the true 
interests of Ireland, is not an adviser upon whom the Pope 
should rely. 

With respect to the priests, I must again repeat that, as a 


body, there is not in the world a more zealous, faithful, hard- 
working clergy, and most of the older priests are friendly to 
order, to education, and to the general improvement of the 
people. There are, however, some unfortunate exceptions, but 
it is among the younger clergy, the curates and coadjutors, that 
the real mischief-makers are to be found, and if they could be 
held in check, great scandal to religion and social order would 
be prevented. Things, however, cannot much longer go on in 
their present state : the duty of a Government towards the 
peaceable and well-disposed portions of the community will 
render special legislation necessary for a state of things which 
has become intolerable, if the existing laws should become in- 
sufficient, and if the timely exercise of spiritual authority be 
much longer withheld. l 

There are at this moment numerous cases in which, if 
evidence could be procured, a prosecution could be sustained 
against priests as accessories to atrocious crimes, by the inciting 
language they have held to people over whose minds they exer- 
cise an absolute control. 

I have endeavoured to procure such evidence, because it is 
the duty of Government to punish misconduct that tends to the 
disruption of every social tie, and in the administration of the 
law no distinction of persons can be admitted ; but such evidence 
in an available form is not to be procured. Prom different 
parts of the country, and from persons upon whose veracity I 
can confide, I hear either that a landlord has been denounced 
by name from the altar, in a manner which is equivalent to his 
d'eath- warrant, or that persons giving evidence ajainst criminals 
are held up as public enemies and traitors, or that people are 
advised to assemble in mobs and enforce their demands upon 
individuals. It was only yesterday that I heard of a priest (in 
the diocese of Dr. McHale) addressing a man in the chapel, and 
telling him that he would not curse him, because the last man 
he had cursed died directly, but that before the blossom fell from 
the potato he would be a corpse. This man's offence was having 
given evidence in a court of justice against a party that had 
broken into his house and robbed him. I have sworn deposi- 
tions now lying on my table in proof of acts of this kind, but 
the deponents dare not come forward and openly give their 
evidence, for they say — and I know it to be true — that their 
lives would not be worth four-and-twenty hours' purchase. In- 
deed, to prevent any misunderstanding upon the subject, the 

e 2 


priest usually defies any person to give information of what he 
has been saying, and warns them of the consequences. 

The result of all this is, not only that crime is encouraged, 
but that the priesthood must fall into contempt, and that the 
wholesome restraint and humanising influence of religion will 
decline ; that the people will become more barbarous ; and that 
the clergy, to maintain their position, must still pander to the 
passions of their flocks. In places — and there are many — where 
a priest friendly to order and anxious for the real welfare of 
his people has given good advice, and intimated that among 
those present in the chapel there were some who had been 
guilty of such and such crimes, the individuals alluded to 
will come forward and bid him hold his tongue, and threaten 
him with vengeance if he proceeds. I could multiply facts and 
details ad mfimtum, for every day some fresh ones come to my 
knowledge, but the above are sufficient to exhibit the state of 
things in certain parts of Ireland, and all its evil tendencies ; 
for wherever the priests so misconduct themselves, there the 
people are always found to be the most turbulent and wretched. 
The indignation, and I may add shame, of the respectable 
Roman Catholic classes are extreme : they consider that the 
course pursued by these unruly priests is calculated to give a 
false impression of their (the Roman Catholic) religion and 
their politics ; to exasperate against them the entire Protestant 
people of England, and to check effectually any intentions on 
the part of the Government to place the two churches on a 
footing of equality. 

The Pope may well hesitate to believe in things the like of 
which exist in no other part of the world ; but we don't ask 
him to take our words for them. He has himself proposed to 
send some person over here to examine and report, and I am 
sure that will be the best mode of proceeding, if any one suffi- 
ciently unprejudiced, and likely to resist the evil influences by 
which he will be surrounded immediately on his arrival, can be 
found to undertake the mission. He should not come in any 
public capacity, or with pomp and circumstance, but privately, 
and with instructions whom he should consult, and with powers 
to act, but not to go beyond the sphere of spiritual jurisdiction. 
The Primate and Archbishop Murray, and some of the metro- 
politan clergy, who well understand the interests of their Church, 
and are acquainted with all that is going on in the country, 
would be safe guides ; and I feel sure that a Papal prohibition 
to take part in political agitations, and to make use of the 


places of worship for secular purposes, would be received as a 
great boon by the well-disposed priests (i.e. the majority of the 
clergy), who, when they become agitators, yield to intimidation, 
and are compelled to act against their judgment. If they could 
appeal to the sanction of the Pope's authority for confining 
themselves to their spiritual duties, they would not fear to have 
their chapels deserted, and thus find themselves destitute of the 
means of subsistence. 

To the best of my belief, the bishops are not in the habit of 
punishing such misdeeds as those I have alluded to. They may 
do so ; but I have neither official nor private knowledge of the 
fact, and if they do, their interference is not very successful. 

Lord Minto had several interviews with Pius IX., 
both about the Papal rescript against the Queen's 
Colleges and also about the conduct of certain bishops 
and priests in Ireland who took so leading a part in the 
work of agitation and terrorism. Neither the Pope 
nor Cardinal Eerretti was versed in public affairs, and 
they were evidently much astonished at the state of 
things which enquiry revealed to them as existing in 
Ireland. The Pope expressed his entire disapprobation 
of the political activity of the Irish clergy, and he 
assured Lord Minto not only of his readiness but of 
his great desire to do whatever might be in his power 
to apply a remedy to these clerical disorders. He also 
spoke with regret of the effect which the missive of the 
Propaganda against the new Colleges appeared likely 
to produce, saying that he had postponed as long as he 
could giving his sanction to the report of the Sacred 
College, which he had finally done as understanding 
that it represented the deliberate opinion of the great 
majority of the Irish Bishops. 

The 6 Diplomatic Relations with Rome Bill,' to 
which Lord Palmerston refers, passed through Par- 
liament, but Lord Eglinton, in the House of Lords, 
carried a clause against the Government by which the 
reception of an ecclesiastic as Papal Nuncio in London 
was forbidden. This condition was regarded at Rome 
with such dislike that the Pope refused to send any 


Minister, and also declined to receive an envoy from 
England on a unilateral footing/ The truth was that 
representations made to him from Ireland induced him 
to imagine that we were in such straits in Irish affairs 
that we should be compelled to yield. When Lord 
Minto asked whether he would, on his part, receive 
as English Minister one of our Archbishops or the 
Moderator of the Church of Scotland in full canonicals, 
he frankly owned that he could not ; but reciprocity 
has never been a weakness of the Vatican. 

Lord Palmerston waa in favour of the Eglinton 
clause. To Lord Clarendon he writes : — l 

I could not have consented to make myself responsible for 
receiving an ecclesiastic as Roman envoy, and it is much better 
that our refusal should stand upon a prohibitory law than upon 
our own voluntary determination. I quite concur in the view 
taken of that question by Aberdeen and Stanley, and I am con- 
vinced, by my diplomatic experience, that there would be no 
end to the embarrassments and inconveniences which we should 
suffer from having a Roman priest invested with diplomatic 
privilege holding his court in London, surrounded by English 
and Irish Catholics, and wielding a power of immense though 
secret extent, and capable of becoming an engine of political in- 
trigue to serve all kinds of foreign interests. 

As for the idea that we could manage the Irish priests by 
means of a Roman priest in London, I am convinced that the 
presence of such a man would only have given the Irish priests 
an additional means of managing us. 

Cappucini, a liberal and enlightened man, was offered to he 
nuncio at Paris ; he declined, and gave to his private friends 
the reason — that he knew he should have been obliged, by his 
official position, to side with the most ultra of the Catholic and 
Jesuit party in France, and as his opinions were against them, 
he would not place himself in so disagreeable a position. 

Very shortly after Lord Minto arrived in Rome — 
namely, in January, 1848 — an insurrection broke out 
at Palermo, the Sicilians demanding from the King of 
Naples the Constitution of 1812. Both parties applied 
to Lord Napier, then our chargS d'affaires at Naples, to 

1 F. O., March 9, 1848. 


mediate between them. The Sicilians founded their 
application npon the former connection between Eng- 
land and Sicily, and upon the share which the British 
Government had had in the remodelling of the Sicilian 
Constitution in 1812. The Neapolitan Government 
founded their application upon the well-known interest 
which had always been taken by the British Govern- 
ment in the welfare of the kingdom of Naples. Lord 
Napier, however, did not undertake the office, because 
the Neapolitan Government was not willing at that time 
to authorise such proposals as were alone likely to lead 
to any arrangement. Soon, however, the King invited 
Lord Minto to Naples, and requested him to employ 
his good offices to effect a reconciliation between the 
Sicilians and the Home Government. 

Foreign Office : Feb. 24, 1 1848. 

My dear Minto, — I have now but five minutes to write to 
you, more than enough to give you all the instructions you 
need, which are to act according to your own good judgment as 
events succeed each other. I most sincerely hope that you will 
have been able to bring the Naples Government round to your 
viewB about Sicily. Your scheme of amalgamation is excellent, 
and would afford the best chance of a permanent connection 
between the two countries ; but one fears the blind obstinacy 
of the King. The Sicilians, moreover, doubt his future good 
faith, but things have gone much too far for it to be possible for 
him hereafter to retract ; and as to our guarantee, that is out 
of the question, and would lead us into future embarrassments 
and responsibilities of the most difficult and inconvenient kind. 
In short, the position of a foreign Power who should be guaran- 
tee between a sovereign and a portion of his subjects would be 
embarrassing for such Power, and inconsistent with the inde- 
pendence of such sovereign. Probably the King of Naples 
would not consent to it. 

As to the poor Pope, I live in daily dread of hearing of 
^e misadventure having befallen him. Events have gone too 
kst for such a slow sailer as he is. I only hope he will not be 
swamped by the swell in the wake of those who have outstripped 

1 Two days before the Revolution at Paris. 


him, for this would perhaps bring the Austrians into the Roman 
States ; and then we should have a regular European row. 
One thing, however, might prevent this, and that is, the 
change of Government which happened yesterday at Paris; ! 
for Metternich, if he hears of it in time, will not be disposed to 
take any step which will irretrievably commit him until he is 
able to learn the views and intentions and policy of this new 
Government in France. It will, however, of course, be much 
more liberal than Guizot's, both at home and abroad, and espe- 
cially in regard to Italian affairs. What had been happening 
in Italy ought to have been a warning to Guizot; what has 
now happened to Guizot ought to be a warning to Italy. 
Guizot thought that by a packed Parliament and a corruptly- 
obtained majority he could control the will of the nation, and 
the result has been that the will of the Crown has been con- 
trolled by an armed popular force. People have long gone on 
crying up Louis Philippe as the wisest of men. I always have 
thought him one of the most cunning, and therefore not one 
of the wisest. Recent events have shown that he must rank 
among the cunning who outwit themselves, and not among the 
wise, who master events by foresight and prudence. This sur- 
render of the King of the Barricades to the summons of the 
National Guard is, however, a curious example of political and 
poetical justice. 

After much discussion with the King and his 
Ministers, Lord Minto was authorised to propose an 
arrangement which, in his opinion, the Sicilians might 
reasonably and probably accept. He then sailed for 
Palermo. Meanwhile, however, arrived the news of 
the French Revolution. This was a spark that set fire 
to all that was combustible in Italy. The news turned 
the heads of the Sicilians, and they suddenly deter- 
mined no longer to acknowledge the King of Naples as 
their sovereign. This was what Lord Minto found to 
be the state of affairs on his arrival. He refused to 
land unless the Sicilians consented to the union of the 
two crowns, and he found it eventually impossible to 
carry out his mediation, owing to the ferment caused 
by events in France. Lord Palmerston writes pro- 

1 M. Guizot's resignation. 


phetically, though, as it turned out, ten years were to 
elapse before the fulfilment. 

Foreign Office : March 28, 1848. 
My dear Minto, — Was there ever such a scene of confusion 
as now prevails almost all over Europe 1 Fortunate, however, 
has it been for Italy that you crossed the Alps last autumn. 
If the Italian sovereigns had not been urged by you to move 
on, while their impatient subjects were kept back, there would 
by this time have been nothing but Republics from the Alps to 

I hope you will have been able to settle matters between 
the Sicilians and the Government of Naples without a separa- 
tion of the crowns, though your last accounts, written just after 
your arrival at Palermo, inspired us with some doubts on that 

This is one more in addition to the numberless proofs of the 
danger of delays. If Bozzelli had not been so obstinate, you 
would have been able to settle it all before the news of the 
French Revolution reached Sicily. 

The greatest and most important event of these last few 
weeks is perhaps the retirement of Metternich. Happy would 
it have been for the continent of Europe if this had happened 
some years ago. But better now than later. We have just 
heard of the entrance of Sardinian troops into Lombardy to help 
the Milanese. Northern Italy will henceforward be Italian, 
and the Austrian frontier will be at the Tyrol. This will be 
no real loss to Austria. If North Italy had been well affected, 
it would have been an element of strength. Discontented as it 
was, it has proved a source of weakness. Of course Parma and 
Modena will follow the example, and in this way the King, no 
longer of Sardinia, but of Northern Italy, will become a sove- 
reign of some importance in Europe. This will make a league 
between him and the other Italian rulers still more desirable 
and much more feasible. Italy ought to unite in a Confederacy 
similar to that of Germany, commercial and political, and now 
is the time to strike the iron while it is hot. Austria may 
perhaps lose Gallicia also. I hope her losses will go no further ; 
but enough will even then remain to her to make her, if well 
governed, a most powerful State. The question is, has she any 
toen capable of making any State a powerful one by good 
government 1 

This country is for the present quiet, though the Repealers 
and the Chartists meditate some movement. I think, however,. 


that we shall be fully a match for them. The country is sound 
at heart, and there is a gallant public spirit which will show 
itself at the first intimation of real danger. 

On the failure of Lord Minto's mediation the 
Sicilians proceeded to decree the separation of the 
crown of Naples and Sicily, and proposed to the Duke 
of Genoa to become their king, which he, however, 
declined. The King of Naples, on the arrival of this 
news, despatched ships and troops against Messina and 
Palermo. The bombardment of these towns was at- 
tended by such acts of violence and cruelty on both 
sides, that the English and French fleets interfered 
to procure an armistice. The period for cessation of 
hostilities expired, however, without any arrangement 
being arrived at. The fight was renewed; and the 
Sicilian revolt was finally put down by the middle of 
the year 1849. 




The repeal of the Navigation Laws was one of the 

most prominent measures promised in the Queen's 

Speech at the opening of the new Parliament. The 

Government having thus pledged themselves to deal 

with the question, Lord Palmerston saw that such a 

step would advantageously affect our foreign relations 

with maritime powers, and especially with the United 

States of America. He desired that the obstacles which 

such, a measure would remove from the way of our free 

intercourse with the latter country should be succeeded 

by a cordial alliance. The following letter contains his 

views, and it is interesting as showing how different 

was the spirit with which he approached these subjects 

from that usually ascribed to him both at home and 

abroad. Even as early as 1848, anticipating Cobden 

and the Declaration of Paris, he was suggesting the 

principle of arbitration, and advocated the abolition of 

letters of marque : — 

C. G.: January 20, 1848. 

My dear John Russell, — If, as I hope, we shall succeed in 
altering our Navigation Laws, and if , as a consequence, Great 
Britain and the United States shall place their commercial 
marines upon a footing of mutual equality, with the exception 
tf the coasting trade and some other special matters, might not 
such an arrangement afford us a good opportunity for endeavour- 
ing to carry in some degree into execution the wish which Mr. 
Fox entertained in 1783, when he wished to substitute close 


alliance in the place of sovereignty and dependence as the con* 
necting link between the United States and Great Britain ? 

A treaty for mutual defence would no longer be applicable 
to the condition of the two countries as independent Powers;, 
but might they not, with mutual advantage, conclude a treaty 
containing something like the following conditions : — 

1st. That in all cases of difference which may hereafter, un- 
fortunately, arise between the contracting parties, they will, in 
the first place, have recourse to the (S^iJSSd of some friendly 
Power ; and that hostilities shall not begin between them until 
every endeavour to settle their difference by such means shall 
have proved fruitless. 

2nd. That if either of the two should at any time be at war 
with any other Power, no subject or citizen of the other con- 
tracting party shall be allowed to take out letters of marque 
from such other Power, under pain of being treated and dealt 
with as a pirate. 

3rd. That in such case of war between either of the two 
parties and a third Power, no subject or citizen of the other 
contracting party shall be allowed to enter into the service, 
naval or military, of such third Power. 

4th. That in such case of war as aforesaid, neither of the 
contracting parties should afford assistance to the enemies of 
the other, by sea or by land, unless war should break out be- 
tween the two contracting parties themselves, after the failure 
of all endeavours to settle their differences in the manner speci- 
fied in Article 1. 

As to this arbitration question, however, he would 
in practice have tempered theory with prudence. In a 
debate in 1849 he spoke — I might almost say pro- 
phetically — of the disadvantages which England would 
probably have to encounter before such international 
tribunals. It was on the 12th of June, on a motion of 
Mr. Cobden's. Lord Palmerston combated vigorously 
the proposition that we should in any way pledge our- 
selves to submit to the arbitrament of a third party* 
He said : — 

I confess also that I consider it would be a very dangerous 
course for this country to take, because there is no country 
which, from its political and commercial circumstances, from its 
maritime interests, and from its colonial possessions, excites 


more envious and jealous feelings in different quarters than 
England does ; and there is no country that would find it more 
difficult to discover really disinterested and impartial arbiters. 
There is also no country that would be more likely than Eng- 
land to suffer in its important commercial interests from sub- 
mitting the case to arbiters not disinterested, not impartial, and 
not acting with a due sense of their responsibility. 

The fact is that, in weighing our position, whenever 
we have to consider such a proposal, we must not forget 
that no powerful nation can ever expect to be really 
loved or even liked by any other. The interests and 
tows of nations perpetually clash, and men are apt to 
he angry with those who stand between them and the 
accomplishment of their wishes. 

* At the outset of the session a most violent onslaught 
was made upon Lord Palmerston and his policy by 
Messrs. Anstey and Urquhart, and an impeachment be- 
fore a committee of inquiry demanded in two speeches 
which occupied nearly the whole of a Wednesday's 
sitting. He had scarcely begun his reply when the 
sitting came to an end by the six o'clock rule ; and in 
the stirring times that were coming on the House had 
something better to do than to listen to the outpour- 
ings of such men, who for many years would insist that 
in all his actions he was the secret agent of Bussia. 

The few words, however, which he had time to say 
contained the following manly and statesmanlike de- 
claration : — 

I am conscious that during the time for which I have had 
the honour to direct the foreign relations of this country, I have 
devoted to them all the energies which I possess. Other men 
inight have acted, no doubt, with more ability. None could 
We acted with a more entire devotion both of their time and 
faculties. The principle on which I have thought the foreign 
aflaira of this country ought to be conducted is the principle of 
mamtaining peace and friendly understanding with all nations, 
as long as it was possible to do so consistently with a due regard 
to the interests, the honour, and the dignity of this country. 
My endeavours have been to preserve peace. All the Govern 



merits of which I have had the honour to be a member have 
succeeded in accomplishing that object. 

I hold, with respect to alliances, that England is a Power 
sufficiently strong to steer her own course, and not to tie herself 
as an unnecessary appendage to the policy of any other Govern- 
ment. I hold that the real policy of England is to be the 
champion of justice and right; pursuing that course with mode- 
ration and prudence, not becoming the Quixote of the world, 
but giving the weight of her moral sanction and support wherever 
she thinks justice is, and whenever she thinks that wrong has 
i been done. 

As long as she sympathises with right and justice, she will 
never find herself altogether alone. She is sure to find some 
other State of sufficient power, influence, and weight to support 
and aid her in the course she may think fit to pursue. There- 
fore I say that it is a narrow policy to suppose that this country 
; or that is to be marked out as the eternal ally or the perpetual 
enemy of England. We have "no eternal allies, and we have no 
perpetual enemies. Our interests are eternal and perpetual, and 
those interests it is our duty to follow. And if I might be 
allowed to express in one sentence the principle which I think 
ought to guide an English Minister, I would adopt the expres- 
sion of Canning, and say that with every British Minister the 
'interests of England ought to be the shibboleth of his policy. 

He used also frequently to combat the romantic 
notion that nations or governments are much or per- 
manently influenced by friendships, or that you could 
apply to the intercourse of nations the same general 
rules as to the intercourse of individuals. The only 
thing which makes one Government follow the advice 
or yield to the counsel of another is the hope of benefit 
to accrue from adopting it or the fear of the conse- 
quences of opposing it. 

At the opening of 1848 Italy was agitated by the 
most violent hearings. To the thirst for social ame- 
lioration and political power were added aspirations 
for national unity. The reforms of Pio Nono, and the 
democratic concessions of Charles Albert and of the 
King of Naples, had so strongly stimulated the revo- 
lutionary passions, that it seemed only a question of 


time when the smothered flames would break out in 
one general conflagration. Austria saw all this with 
declared uneasiness, and seemed inclined to interfere. 
This it was Lord Palmerston's object, if possible, to 

F. 0.: February 11, 1848. 

My dear Ponsonby, — I send yon an important despatch to 
be commnnicated to Prince Metternich, and I wish you to re- 
commend it to his most serious consideration. It is worded, I 
trust, in such a way as not to be liable to give offence ; but it 
must be understood as meaning and implying more than it ex- 
presses. The real fact is, that upon Metternich's decision in 
regard to the affairs of Italy depends the question of peace or 
war in Europe. If he remains quiet, and does not meddle with 
matters beyond the Austrian frontiers, peace will be maintained, 
and all these Italian changes will be effected with as little dis- 
turbance as is consistent with the nature of things. If he takes 
upon himself the task of regulating by force of arms the internal 
affairs of the Italian States, there will infallibly be war, and it 
will be a war of principles which, beginning in Italy, will spread 
over all Europe, and out of which the Austrian Empire will 
certainly not issue unchanged. In that war England and 
Austria will certainly not be on the same side— a circumstance 
which would occasion to every Englishman the deepest regret. 
In that war, whatever Louis Philippe and Guizot may promise, 
the principal champions contending against each other would be 
Austria and France; and I would wish Metternich well and 
maturely to consider what would be the effect on the internal 
condition of Germany which would be produced by a war be- 
tween Austria and France, in which Austria was engaged in 
(rushing and France in upholding constitutional liberty. It 
would be well for Prince Metternich to calculate beforehand, 
not merely what portion of the people of Germany he could 
count upon as allies in such a contest, but how many of the 
Governments even would venture to take part with him in the 
rfraggle. If he wished to throw the greater part of Germany 
into dose alliance with France, he could not take a better method 
: - of doing so. 

4 He best knows the disposition of his own States; but I 
t { should greatly doubt his receiving any support in such a struggle 
.>; from Hungary or Bohemia ; and he would of course have*all the 
o{ Emperor's Italian subjects against him. 



When one comes to reflect upon all the endless difficulties 
and embarrassments which such a course would involve, one 
cannot believe that a statesman so prudent and calculating, so 
long-sighted and so experienced, could fall into such an error; 
but the great accumulation of Austrian troops in the Lombard 
and Venetian provinces inspires one with apprehension. 

The recent debates in the French Chambers will have shown 
to Prince Metternich how little he can count upon the support 
or even the neutrality of France ; and he may depend upon it, 
that in defence of constitutional liberty in Italy the French 
nation would rush to arms, and a French army would again 
water their horses in the Danube. 

Fray exert all your persuasion with the Prince to induce 
him to authorise you to send us some tranquillising assuranofc 
on this matter. We set too great a value upon the maintenance 
of Austria as the pivot of the balance of power in Europe to be 
-able to see without the deepest concern any course of action 
begun by her Government which would produce fatal conse- 
quences to her, and which would place us probably, against oar 
will, in the adverse scale. 

At the same time he was consistently using his in- 
fluence to keep the Italian Governments in the consti- 
tutional path on which they appeared to have entered. 
Mr. Abercroinby was our Minister at the Sardinian 

F. O.: February 12, 1848. 

My dear Abercromby, — I send you a despatch which I had 
prepared before I received yours, which reached me this morn- 
ing, stating that the Cabinet at Turin were deliberating about 
the grant of a constitution. I hope their deliberation will have 
ended affirmatively, and in that case our exhortations will apply 
only to the method of carrying their assent into execution. If 
they should have refused, you will then have to exert your elo- 
quence in trying to persuade them and the King to reconsider J 
and to reverse their decision. Arguments will not be wanting. 
If the King resolves to oppose himself to the wishes and de- 
mands of his subjects, he must be prepared for one of two 
courses. He must either abdicate or call in foreign aid. The 
•st alternative would be unwise and unnecessary, and would, 
moreover, be like a man shooting himself to avoid a danger 
which might threaten him with death. 

As to calling in foreign aid, we cannot believe that, with hid 


high and patriotic feelings, he would consent to hold his throne 
by means of French or Austrian bayonets, and to become there; 
after the mere puppet of Austria or of France. It is possible, 
indeed, that he may have a more high-minded feeling on this 
subject, and that, having committed himself in some way or 
other against a Constitution, he may think it derogatory to his 
consistency now to accept one. It is needless to point out how 
untenable such a notion would be, and how futile any such 
pledge or any such former resolution ought to be deemed as an 
obstacle to prevent him from now performing a great and im- 
portant duty, as Sovereign, towards the nation which Providence 
has committed to his charge. 

From the first moment that one heard that the King of 
Napleafhad consented to a Constitution, it was easy to foresee 
that the rest of Italy must have one too. 

To Sir George Hamilton, at Florence, he writes : — 

I conclude that before this reaches you the question whether 
there is or is not to be a Constitution in Tuscany will have been 
decided; but pray do all you can to persuade the Government 
to yield with good grace to the wishes of the people, and upon 
no account whatever to think of calling in or of letting in the 
Austrians to coerce the subjects of the Grand Duke. The first 
thing of all is national independence, and nothing can make up 
for title loss of that. 

The Bevolution at Paris came, however, like a thun- 
der-clap to scatter all the timid compromises and falter- 
ing concessions of kings, emperors, and grand-dukes. 
In France the blind obstinacy of a self-willed King, the 
corruption of the Government and governing classes, 
as illustrated by the Cubi&res-Teste and Petit scandals, 
and by the Praslin tragedy, the anti-Liberal a»nd un- 
popular policy of the French Foreign Office, partly the 
result of estrangement from England caused by the 
i Spanish Marriages;' these all had combined to bring 
'to a climax discontent, which a long period of commer- 
cial and financial distress had greatly fomented. The, 
different sections of malcontents agreed to unite on thi i 
basis of a demand for parliamentary reform. Banquets 
were organised in different parts of France, when ex- 
citing speeches were made, and complaints found audible 
vol. n. F 


expression. The Assembly met on the 28th of Decem- 
ber. Upon the Address arose a debate, which lasted 
twenty days, and during which Guizot and Duchatel ! 
had in vain tried to make head against the attacks of 
Thiers, Lamartine, Billault, and De Toequeville. The 
Ministry kept a servile though a decreasing majority in 
the divisions which took place ; but the victory lay with 
the others. The debate closed on the 7th of February. 
i The war of words,' said the ' National,' on the 9th, ' is 
at an end. That of deeds is now to come.' 

A political banquet, which had been originally fixed 
for the 19th of January in Paris itself, had been post- 
poned in consequence of an interdiction by the police. 
On the day after the rejection of the amendment on 
the Address, the Liberal deputies met and determined 
to persevere in their design. The revived banquet was 
fixed for the 22nd, and was publicly announced. At 
this crisis Louis Philippe's obstinacy showed itself most 
disastrously. The death of his sister, the Princess 
Adelaide, a few weeks before, had removed his best 
counsellor. ' I never will consent to Eeform,' he de- 
clared with cynical contempt for constitutional doctrine. 
' Reform is another word for the advent of the Oppo- 
sition ! ' 

Vacillation, however, often hangs on the skirts of 
obstinacy. With Louis Philippe it was always so, and 
this occasion formed no exception. The Liberal chiefs 
were as anxious as the Government itself to avoid any 
violent collision. A compromise was agreed to, by 
which there was to be a procession, but no banquet. 
When it appeared likely that the multitude would be 
great, the authorities took alarm, again changed front, 
and, on the very morning of the 22nd, covered the walls 
of Paris with placards forbidding any assembly in the 
streets. The crowds, however, had collected, and all 
day thronged the central parts of the ciiy. Their 
leaders had stayed away. 

i Guizot was a brilliant orator, but neither a statesman nor a man 
of business. Duchatel had great aptitude, but was an idle man, and 
not an effective speaker, except on finance. 


Lord Normanby sent Lord Palmerston the follow- 
ing record of his personal observations during these 
events : — 

Paris: March 13, 1848. 

There are some scattered incidents in the last days of Louis 
Philippe and his Minister which came within my personal 
observation, which I should like to take this early opportunity 
of collecting and recording, as they have their bearing upon 
the great political moral to be derived from the astounding 

I ventured, in the middle of last year, to call your lordship's 
attention to the state of political feeling in the country, and to 
remark that nothing could save the dynasty of July but an 
immediate change of men, and measures of reform at once 
prompt and sincere. Not one measure of a conciliatory descrip- 
tion was from that time even contemplated by the Government, 
and yet there was a moment when the very extent of the general 
discontent appeared to hold out hopes of a peaceful solution of 
the question. The danger had always been that the King, 
supported by a packed majority of the Chamber, would persevere 
to the last to resist the popular will, but this will had latterly 
acquired such an irresistible impulse that it had even found its 
way into the constitutional channels hitherto choked up by 
corruption. When one saw, in the course of the debates on the 
Address, the effect of public opinion in reducing even such a 
majority from 120 to 30, one had even hopes that a vote of the 
Chamber, by upsetting the Ministry, might preserve the throne. 
As I attended personally every one of these sittings, which 
lasted three weeks, I could observe that the decline of the 
numerical force of the majority was not so strong an indication 
as the changes in its tone. There was still a disposition on the 
part of many to prolong, for a short time, the existence of the 
Ministry, in order to avoid the probable dissolution of the 
Chamber, but during the whole of that discussion of unexampled 
length, there was hardly an independent member, or one not 
actually in office with the Government, who said one word in 
favour either of their foreign or domestic policy; and it was 
j also remarkable that, often as M. Guizot had upon former 
occasions recovered himself from surrounding difficulties by the 
exercise of his extraordinary talent in the tribune, he never 
once, during the debates on the Address, made a single effective 




He heard, without an attempt at reply, the Spanish mar- 
riages stigmatised as a selfish and anti-national policy, amidst 
the cheers of his opponents, and without one dissenting mur- 
mur from that majority which had supported them last year. 
It was proved by the admission of his own Minister of War 
that at die time when he was proposing to Europe a mediation 
in Swiss affairs, he had smuggled, for the benefit of the Sonder- 
bund, arms and ammunition out of the Royal Arsenal at 
Besancon, concealed in the shape of other merchandise, and 
with a false declaration to their own Customs. The only excuse 
he attempted of his Italian policy was to say that there could 
not be a thought of a Constitution in Italy for the next five or 
ten years, and this dictum was uttered on the very day the 
Constitution was proclaimed at Naples. 

The miserable figure which the Government made during 
the whole of the debate was in no small degree caused by the 
profound sensation produced in the Chamber and in society by 
the incident with which it commenced. The personal integrity 
of M. Guizot had, next to his oratorical superiority, been the 
throne upon which his supporters had distinguished him from 
his fellows. That which was called ' rafiaire Petit ' was, there- 
fore, calculated to make a great sensation, not so much from its 
individual importance as from the system which it showed up. 
M. Guizot was not so much injured by his evident participation 
in it as by the callous audacity with which he treated the matter. 

M. Bertin de Vaux, a peer of France, and a part proprietor 
of the * Journal des D6bats,' desired to procure a place for M. 
Petit, the husband of his mistress. As what M. Bertin desired 
was employment for M. Petit, and as M. Petit was not particular 
at what price his ambition was gratified, M. Guizot told M. 
Bertin de Vaux that, provided M. Petit would buy the resigna- 
tion of a better place, he should himself possess a smaller one 
then vacant. This bargain was executed, but the exigencies of 
parliamentary corruption at that time pressing hard upon M. 
Guizot, he gave away, without reference to M. Petit, both the 
place he desired and that which he had bought, endeavouring 
to put him off with a promise of an early vacancy ; but at this 
both M. Petit and his patron, M. Bertin de Vaux, were indig- 
nant, and the 60,000 francs which M. Guizot himself repaid 
M. Bertin de Vaux for M. Petit, as the price he had paid for 
the place, were obtained for that purpose out of the Secret Ser- 
vice Money. This was the real history of the first part of this 
affair, and yet M. Guizot had the effrontery to say from the tri- 



bune that he was not personally acquainted with any of the 
details of the affair. There was not one of his majority who 
believed a syllable of this assertion, and how could they, as, 
when asked how then M. Bertin de Vaux came to assert in his 
letter that he had received the money from, him, he was forced 
to remain silent ? 

It was under the general impression thus produced that the 
question of the banquet arose. 

I have already, in former despatches, mentioned to your 
lordship the exasperation caused by the hostile phrases in the 
King's Speech. When, in addition to this, in assertion of the 
illegality of the banquets, the Minister of Justice made the 
astounding declaration from the tribune that every act that was 
not expressly permitted in the charter was thereby forbidden, 
the Opposition thought it necessary to make a striking demon- 
stration in vindication of their rights. 

The night before that appointed for the banquet I went to 
the Tuileries without knowing the decision of die Opposition 
deputies. As His Majesty had often volunteered to speak to 
me upon his own affairs, I thought it possible he might do so 
then, and I was prepared, if the occasion was thus offered, 
humbly to represent to His Majesty the danger, in the then state 
of the public mind, unnecessarily to provoke a collision in the 
streets. But I was told by one of the Government whom I met 
on the stairs that the Opposition had given up the banquet, and 
I found the whole Court in an ecstasy of delight, as if they had 
gained a great victory. The King spoke to me for some time 
with great animation, but never once alluded to the passing 
events. He adverted to our proposed diplomatic intercourse 
'with Borne, to the difficulty of receiving a priest at St. James's 
in full canonicals ; told a story of the Archbishop of Narbonne, 
who, in the days of his emigration, had got over this difficulty 
hy going to George the Third in a court dress with a sword. I 
only allude to these trivial subjects of conversation because I 
found afterwards that the King had been studying effect to the 
last, and that he had said to those to whom he spoke immediately 
afterwards, ' I am very well satisfied with Lord Nbrmanby to- 
night,' as if he had been speaking to me of the pressing concerns 
of the moment, and that I had approved the course of his 

The infatuation of the King during the whole of the debates 
on the Address was very remarkable. Several of the repre- 
sentatives of the smaller German Courts went to him with 


letters of condolence on Madame Adelaide's death, and to some 
he said, ' Tell your master not to mind having popular assem- 
blies ; let them only learn to manage them as I manage mine ; 
see the noise they are making now ; I shall soon have them in 
hand again ; they want me to get rid of Guizot ; I will not do 
it. Can I possibly give a stronger proof of my power % ' 

Although the Government had forbidden the meet- 
ing, they kept no troops to overawe the mob. Kioting, 
therefore, began towards the evening of the 22nd, and 
troops were sent for during the night. On the 23rd a 
collision toot place in front of the Foreign Office be- 
tween the soldiers and the people. Lives were lost, 
and the Eevolution was started. During the following 
night the Guizot Ministry resigned, and was succeeded 
by Thiers and Odillon Barrot. Marshal Bugeaud and 
General Lamorici&re were placed in command of the 
troops and National Guard. The Marshal lost no time 
in securing the control of Paris, and daybreak of the 
24th found the whole city in possession of the army. 
Had he been allowed to act as he had arranged, the in- 
surrection would have been easily suppressed ; but an 
order from the Palace to cease the combat and with- 
draw the troops sealed the fate of the Monarchy. Sore 
and disheartened, those of his soldiers who retired on 
the Tuileries made but a feeble resistance to the mob 
which broke in, while the King, after signing his abdi- 
cation, was escaping with his family by a back door. 
The Duchess of Orleans forced her way to the Chamber 
of Deputies, and made a courageous effort to secure the 
throne for her son, the Comte de Paris, but all in vain. 
Thus in two short days the Monarchy was swept away, 
and the Provisional Government of a Eepublic substi- 
tuted in its stead. 

The news of these startling events arrived in Eng- 
land on the night of the 25th. As they reached the 
lobby of the House of Commons the murmurs of con- 
versation spreading from the door right through the 
crowded benches caused the unparalleled spectacle of 
a complete, although informal, suspension of business 


or several minutes, every member being engaged in 
dose and earnest colloquy with his neighbour. 

Lord Palmerston acknowledged the news as follows 
x) Lord Normanby : — 

F. O. : February 26, 1848. 

I received at half-past eleven last night in the House of 
Commons your despatches of Thursday. What extraordinary 
knd marvellous events you give me an account of. It is like 
he five acts of a play, and has not taken up much more time. 
Strange that a king who owed his crown to a revolution brought 
ibout by royal blindness and obstinacy should have lost it by 
ocactly the same means, and he a man who had gone through 
ill the vicissitudes of human existence, from the condition of a 
schoolmaster to the pomp of a throne ; and still further that his 
)verthrow should have been assisted by a Minister deeply read 
n the records of history, and whose mind was not merely stored 
with the chronology of historical facts, but had extracted from 
heir mass the reasons of events and the philosophy of their 

I can give you but provisional instructions. Continue at 
roar post. Keep up unofficial and useful communication with 
he men who from hour to hour (I say not even from day to 
lay) may have the direction of events, but commit us to no 
acknowledgment of any men, nor of any things. Our principles 
xf action are to acknowledge whatever rule may be established 
rath apparent prospect of permanency, but none other. We 
lesire friendship and extended commercial intercourse with 
Prance, and peace between France and the rest of Europe. We 
rill engage to prevent the rest of Europe from meddling with 
Prance, which indeed we are quite sure they have no intention 
if doing. The French rulers must engage to prevent France from 
manjling any part of the rest of Europe. Upon such a basis 
)ur relations with France may be placed on a footing more 
riendly than they have been or were likely to be with Louis 
Philippe and Guizot. 

The pacific intentions, however, of the Provisional 
Government began to be doubted, and a report got 
abroad that they were about to declare war against 
Austria at once, and also to annex Belgium on the in- 
vitation of the Eepublican party in that country. The 
ex-King was making for the coast, hoping to reach 


England, and the British Government was taking steps 
to assist him in his flight. 

F. 0. : February 27, 1848. 

My dear Nbrmanby, — I send you a hundred sovereigns by 
this messenger, and will send a hundred more by the next. You 
must use your discretion about going away or staying. It is 
desirable that you should stay as long as you can do so with 
safety both to yourself and to the dignity of the country, because 
your presence protects British subjects ; and your coming away 
would be a measure of much import, and therefore of importance. 

Your accounts of Friday night, received to-day, and the fur- 
ther reports that reach us, are fearfully ominous for the peace of 
Europe. A general war seems to be impending at the moment 
when we all were nattering ourselves that peace would last 
thirty years to come. One felt yesterday that the French army 
had till then counted for nothing in the events which had taken 
place in Paris, and that it was impossible that the French army 
should count for nothing in deciding the destinies of France. 
One therefore felt that it might be in the power of any popular 
general to march fifty or sixty thousand men into Paris, and 
decide matters according to his will, in spite of the armed mob 
or of the National Guard; this thought seems also to have 
occurred to those who are for the moment at the head of affairs, 
and they seem to propose to send the army to attack the neigh- 
bours of France instead of letting it come into Paris to upset 
them. It remains to be seen whether the army will take this 
bait. One fears that it may. If this should be, the British 
Government will have to come to a grave and serious deter- 
mination. We cannot sit quiet and see Belgium overrun and 
Antwerp become a French port; and even a war in other 
directions will sooner or later draw us into its vortex. 

We have taken such measures as are within our power to 
afford the means of coming over to such passengers as may 
come to the coast, including the persons to whom you alluded* 
in your last. 

Montebello says that he sent a message to the Duchess of 
Orleans on Thursday morning, which did not reach her, warning 
her not to rely on the Parliament, against whom, as much as 
against the King, the revolution was directed, but to take her 
son into the streets and throw herself on the National Guard. 
Perhaps if she had received this advice and acted upon it, things 
might have gone differently. 


0. G. : February 28, 1848. 

My dear Normanby, — I received at 11 o'clock this evening 
your very important despatches. All are important, but pre- 
eminently so your short note of yesterday reporting the pacific 
assurances made to you from the Provisional Government, and 
especially their resolution not to accept the incorporation even 
it offered. This is a most wise resolve ; for if they will look to 
Ilie stipulations of the treaty finally concluded between the five 
Powers, Belgium, and the Netherlands, they will see that there 
aw in it guarantees which would have a very awkward bearing 
upon any attempt by France to annex Belgium to its territory. 
In fact, the peace of Europe is now in the hands of the French 
Government, and with them rests the question of peace or war. 

You will have received before this time my despatch desiring 
jou to stay where you are till you receive other instructions, 
and authorizing you to hold such unofficial communications with 
the Government as may be necessary for the public service. Of 
course the French Government cannot expect that we should 
«nd you formal credentials to a Government professedly pro- 
visional and temporary, but we shall take no hostile step towards 
them, and shall not bring you away as long as they continue to 
maintain their authority, and to use it with moderation and for 
purposes of order. Whenever a permanent Government shall 
lave been established, then will be the time for deciding as to 
renewed credentials ; and you know that the invariable principle 
ou which England acts is to acknowledge as the organ of every 
nation that organ which each nation may deliberately choose to 
We. But it must be an organ likely to be permanent, for it 
would not be consistent with the dignity of England to be send- 
ing to her ambassador fresh credentials every ten days, according 
as the caprice of the people of Paris might from time to time 
change the form and substance of French institutions. I grieve 
it the prospect of a republic in France, for I fear that it must 
!ead to war in Europe and fresh agitation in England. Large 
republics seem to be essentially and inherently aggressive, and 
he aggressions of the French will be resisted by the rest of 
Curope, and that is war ; while, on the other hand, the example 
f universal suffrage in France will set our non- voting population 
gog, and will create a demand for an inconvenient extension of 
be suffrage, ballot, and other mischievous things. However, for 
le present, vive Lamartine ! 

It was fortunate for the peace of Europe that a 


Whig Cabinet and a Liberal Foreign Secretary were 
in office at this time. If there had been in London 
an illiberal and anti-democratic Cabinet, imbued with 
the maxims of Burke and the traditions of Pitt, a 
monarchical coalition against France might again have 
been formed. The friendly relations of England with 
France were of great service to the cause of peace. No 
less an authority than the King of the Belgians bore 
testimony to this at a later period in a letter to Lord 
Palmerston, 1 in which he said : — 

I must take this opportunity to express to you my con- 
viction that the acting together of England and France has been 
most useful, as it has facilitated to the French Government a 
system of moderation which it could but with great difficulty 
have maintained if it had not been acting in concert with 

Lord Palmerston's great anxiety at this critical 
moment was to preserve peace by preventing any act 
hostile to the French Eepublic on the part of the Great 
Powers. On the other hand, he hoped by a speedy re- 
cognition of the new form of government in France to 
bring the legitimate influences of Europe to bear upon 
it. He writes to Lord Westmorland at Berlin, and to 
Lord Ponsonby at Vienna : — 

F. O.: February 29, 1848. 

My dear Westmorland, — I firmly believe Lamartine to 
mean peace and no aggression ; it will be of importance, there- 
fore, that the three Powers should not take any steps which 
might look like a threat of attacking France, or an intention to 
interfere in her internal affairs. The only thing to do is to wait 
and watch, and be prepared. As for us, whenever there is a 
settled Government established, we shall, according to our usual 
custom, acknowledge it by sending fresh credentials to our am- 
bassador. But we should like to do this in concert with the 
other Powers; only we should not be able perhaps to wait for 
them if they were disposed to hesitate or demur when the pro- 
per time may come ; and we may not think it expedient to wait 
till after the constituent Assembly shall have met. All men of 

1 January 23, 1849. 


lark of all parties, including the Legitimists, are supporting 
jamartine's Government as the only security at present against 
narchy, conflagration, and massacre. It must be owned that 
he prospect of a republic in France is far from agreeable ; for 
uch a Government would naturally be more likely to place 
>eace in danger than a monarchy would be. But we must deal 
rith things as they are, and not as we would wish to have them. 
Chese Paris events ought to serve, however, as a warning to the 
Prussian Government, and should induce them to set to work 
without delay to complete those constitutional institutions of; 
rhich the King last year laid the foundations. 

P. O. : February 29, 1848. 

My dear Ponsonby, — Here is a pretty to-do at Paris ; it is 
)lain that, for the present at least, we shall have a republic in 
franco. How long it may last is another question. But, for ' 
he present, the only chance for tranquillity and order in France, 
ind for peace in Europe, is to give support to Lamartine. I am 
xmvinced this French Government will not be aggressive, if 
eft alone ; and it is to be hoped that Apponyi and others will 
>e allowed to remain in Paris till things take a decided turn. 
If a republic is decidedly established, the other Powers of Europe 
mist, of course, give credentials addressed to that Government, 
xr they will have to give billets to its troops. I have no time 
» write more, but nothing can be more positive, or, as I believe, 
nore sincere than Lamartine's declarations of a peace policy, 
ind you will observe that, by saying that France has not changed 
ler place in Europe, he virtually acknowledges the obligations 
)f existing treaties. He could not well have done so at present 
n more distinct terms. 

I should advise the Austrians to come to a good understand- 
ing with Sardinia as to mutual defence if attacked, which, how- 
ever, they are not at present likely to be. But if the Austrian 
Government does not mitigate its system of coercion in Lom- 
bardy and grant liberal institutions, they will have a revolt 
there ; and if there shall be conflict in Lombardy between the 
troops and the public, and much bloodshed, it is to be feared 
that the French nation will break loose in spite of Lamartine's 
efforts to restrain them. 

Lamartine now issued a very able circular or mani- 
festo to the diplomatic agents of France. It deprecated 
any idea that the Republic of 1848 must necessarily 


follow the warlike principles of 1792, but went on to 
declare that, in the eyes of France, the treaties of 1815 
existed no longer as law, and that she would not look 
with indifference on any forcible attempt to repress the 
nascent aspirations of oppressed nationalities. Lord 
Palmerston writes t& Lord Clarendon on March 9 : — 

Any Government which wished to pick a quarrel with 
France might find ample materials in this circular. But it 
seems to me that the true policy of Europe at present is, to say 
as little and do as little as possible, so as not to stir matters in 
France beyond their natural turbulence, and to watch events to 
be prepared for them. The circular is evidently a piece of 
patchwork put together by opposite parties in the Government, 
the one warlike and disturbing, the other peaceful and concilia- 
tory. I should say that if you were to put the whole of it into 
a crucible, and evaporate the gaseous parts, and scum off the 
dross, you would find the regulus l to be peace and good-fellow- 
ehip with other Governments. 

There soon arose an occasion for testing the truth 
of this opinion. The Irish revolutionists, confident 
that they would get sympathy and aid from the French 
Republic, were sending over deputations to Paris ; and 
at the interviews which they obtained Irish questions 
were very freely discussed. Lord Palmerston thought 
it well to speak out at once before much harm was 
done : — 

F. O.: March 21, 1848. 

My dear Normanby, — I have written you an official despatch 
about M. de Lamartine's allocutions to Irish deputations and 
his direct allusions therein to our internal affairs, such afl 
Catholic Emancipation, Irish agitation, Repeal of the Union, 
and other matters, with which no foreign Government had any 
, right to meddle. I wish you to convey to him, in terms as civil 
as you can use, that these speeches, and especially that to which 
my despatch refers, have given great offence in this country to 
many persons who very sincerely desire to see the most friendly 
relations maintained between England and France, and that if 
this practice of interfering in our affairs, and of giving in this 

1 The pure metal, which in the melting of ores falls to the bottom 
of the crucible. 


lanner direct encouragement to political agitation within the 
Jnited Kingdom, shall continue to be persevered in by the 
French Government, a cry will soon arise in this country for 
he withdrawal of our embassy from Paris. This has already 
teen suggested to me by many of the supporters of the Govern- 
aent as an appropriate mark of our disapprobation of the 
wooeedings of the French Government in these matters. 

This remonstrance was not without effect. A de- 
3utation, headed by Smith O'Brien himself, received 
from Lamartine an answer which must have dashed 
ill their hopes. He told them that it was not ' con- 
renable' for the French nation to intervene in the 
iflkirs of a country with which they were and wished 
bo remain at peace. Lord Palmerston acknowledges 
the straightforward conduct of the French Foreign 
Minister: — 

F. O.: April 4, 1848. 

My dear Normanby, — Pray tell Lamartine how very much 
obliged we feel for his handsome and friendly conduct about the 
Irish deputation. His answer was most honourable and gentle- 
manlike, and just what might have been expected from a high- 
minded man like him. 

I forgot in the hurry in which I have been living to tell you 
that I had Guizot and the Lievens to dinner on Sunday week 
last, with half-a-dozen people to meet them ; but I took care 
that it should not be put into the paper. Nobody, I imagine, 
can suppose that there is any political sympathy between Guizot 
and me ; we have been opposed to each other as public men, 
both as representing adverse systems of general political prin- 
ciples, and as acting upon conflicting views of international 
interest. But Guizot and I were upon very good terms person- 
ally while he was ambassador here ; and he was particularly 
civil to me when I was at Paris two years ago. He is now in 
misfortune and adversity ; and though I may agree with most 
other people in thinking that his own political errors have been 
tile true causes of his present condition, yet it would, I think, 
have been ungenerous in me if I had not shown myself as sen- 
sible of his former civility to me as I should have done if he 
had come here under circumstances more fortunate for himself. 
I am sure that no reasonable Frenchman can find fault with those 
small attentions which are merely the expressions of personal feel- 


Log, and which have nothing whatever to do with any political 
matters. I shall, on the same principle, have the Duchatels to 
dinner in a quiet and unostentatious manner ; I saw a good 
deal of them on the Rhine, and they also gave us a very hospit- 
able reception when we were at Paris. 

In Italy the news of the French Eevolution had 
a prodigious effect. Everywhere the aristocratic had 
to yield to the democratic party. Venice broke away 
from Austria, and proclaimed a Republic. Milan re- 
volted, and compelled the Austrian troops to commence 
a retreat which only ceased beyond the Mincio. Charles 
Albert, King of Sardinia, resolved to embrace the cause 
of Italian independence, and to bring the regular forces 
of the Piedmontese monarchy to the aid of insurgent 
Lombardy. On March 25 his army crossed the Ticino 
and entered the Austrian territory. On March 31 Lord 
PaJmerston writes to Lord Normanby : — 

Our attitude with regard to what is passing in the north of 
Italy is that of passive spectators. Abercromby made no pro- 
test, though he urged all the arguments which suggested 
themselves to him against the advance of the Sardinian 

It may be questionable how far Charles Albert was justified 
by the rules of good neighbourhood in seizing an Austrian pro- 
vince ; my own belief is that he could not help doing so, and as 
Europe is now undergoing great changes, I cannot myself regret 
that the establishment of a good state in Northern Italy should 
be one of them. As to your not always getting letters from me 
by every messenger who passes through Paris, never wonder at 
that nor think it extraordinary. Wonder rather when I am 
able to find time to write at all ; I am sure you would if you 
saw the avalanche of despatches from every part of the world 
which come down upon me daily, and which must be read, and 
if you witnessed the number of interviews which I cannot avoid 
giving every day of the week. Every post sends me a lamenting 
Minister throwing himself and his country upon England for 
help, which I am obliged to tell him we cannot afford him. 
But Belgium is a case by itself, and both France and England 
are bound by treaty engagements in regard to that country, 
which it is most desirable for the repose of France and England 
that no events should call into active operation. 


With Russia he wished to be on good terms, as 
the only State left erect amid the general downfall ; 
although he frankly stated to the Government of the 
Czar that, in the opinion of Her Majesty's Government, 
Poland was entitled to a Constitution under the terms 
of the Treaty of Vienna ; so he says to Lord Bloomfield 
at St. Petersburg : — 1 

Assure Count Nesselrode that our feelings and sentiments 
towards Russia are exactly similar to those which he expresses 
to you towards England. We are at present the only two 
Powers in Europe (excepting always Belgium) that remain 
standing upright, and we ought to look with confidence to each 
other. Of course he must be aware that public feeling in this 
oountry runs strong in favour of the Poles ; but we, the Govern- 
ment, will never do anything underhand or ungentlemanlike on 
those matters. I wish we could hope that the Emperor might 
of his own accord settle the Polish question in some satisfactory 

While all these conflicts were surging in Europe, 
and threatening to wipe out almost every line of the 
Treaty of Vienna, the British Foreign Office had, as 
may be supposed, plenty of work to engage its atten- 
tion. Its policy at this crisis may be thus sum- 
marised: — 

To maintain peace as long as possible, but to main- 
tain it by exerting, and not by foregoing, English in- 
fluence. To support the integrity and independence 
of Belgium so long as the Belgians were themselves 
willing to uphold it. To favour the development of 
German unity — whether in the shape of one or two 
German Powers — strong enough to make head against 
any attack from Prance or Bussia. To advise Austria 
not to keep up a bloody struggle for the maintenance 
of the Lombard kingdom. Lastly, not to interfere in 
any way with the form of government in Prance, but 
not to slacken or part with any means of resistance 
should the French seek to relieve internal embarrass- 
ment by external aggression. 

1 To Lord Bloomfield. F. 0., April 11, 1848. 


England felt also in her home affairs the events in 
France, for they stirred np the revolutionary spirit, such 
as it was. The Chartists, with mad Feargus O'Connor 
at their head, prepared a demonstration for April 10, 
when they proposed, after meeting on Kennington Com- 
mon, to march to the House of Commons with a monster 
petition. On the day named they were quietly informed 
by the police officers on the ground that they would not 
be allowed to cross the Thames. The whole affair 
ludicrously collapsed, although it had created serious 
alarm in London. Lord Palmerston reports the result 
as follows to our ambassador at Paris : — 

F. O. : April 11, 1848. 

Yesterday was a glorious day, the Waterloo of peace and 
order. They say there were upwards of one hundred thousand 
special constables — some put the number at two hundred and 
fifty thousand ; but the streets were swarming with them, and 
men of all classes and ranks were blended together in defence of 
law and property. The Chartists made a poor figure, and did 
not muster more than fifteen thousand men on the Common. 
Feargus was frightened out of his wits, and was made the hap- 
piest man in England at being told that the procession could 
not pass the bridges. The Chartists have found that the great 
bulk of the inhabitants of London are against them, and they 
will probably lie by for the present and watch for some more 
favourable moment. 

Meanwhile, the result of yesterday will produce a good and 
calming effect all over this and the sister island. The foreigners 
did not show ; but the constables, regular and special, had sworn 
to make an example of any whiskered and bearded rioters whom 
they might meet with, and I am convinced would have mashed 
them to jelly. 

Smith O'Brien surpassed himself last night in dulness, bad 
taste, and treason. 

The speech here referred to was on the discussion 
of the ' Bill for the more effectual Eepression of Trea- 
sonable Proceedings/ and was the last occasion on 
which Smith O'Brien appeared in the House of Com- 
mons previous to taking the field ! The contemptuous 
indignation with which he was received by the House 


ras overwhelming. In the next letter we get a very- 
teat retort of Sir Robert Peel's, which shows him 
•pable of humour when occasion offered. 

F. 0.: April 18, 1848. 

My dear Normanby, — Lamartine is really a wonderful 
fallow, and is endowed with great qualities. It is much to be 
faired that he should swim through the breakers and carry his 
mntry safe into port. I conclude that he has escaped one dan- 

tby the refusal to naturalise Brougham ; for it is evident 
our ex-Chancellor meant, if he had got himself elected, to 

have put up for being President of the Republic. It is woful 

to see a man who is so near being a great man make himself so 


We have just been sending up to the Lords from the House 

of Commons our Bill for the Security of the Crown. Peel made 
tgood hit in the debate. Feargus O'Connor alluded to the pos- 
ftble case of Beelzebub being sovereign, and Peel said that in 
that case Feargus would certainly enjoy the confidence of the 
Grown. Hume, at the close of the debate, blamed us for not 
kaving put down the Convention, 1 which, he said, ought not to 
be permitted to go on, and which, he contended (though erro- 
neously), comes within the prohibitive provisions of our existing 

What we hear from Ireland tallies with what you wrote me 
a &w days ago, that there can be no decided and extensive out- 
break till the potato and grain harvest is in, as men must cat to 
be able to fight. I trust we shall be able to keep them quiet 
after all. 

Leopold, King of the Belgians, was all through his 
long and useful life one of Lord Palmerston's constant 
correspondents. His sagacity and liberal views won 
the respect of the English Minister, who was always 
Wady frankly to interchange ideas with him. Since 
February, Paris had passed through a series of convul- 
sions, and, at the moment when the following letter 
was written, the French Assembly, engaged in a struggle 
with the Socialists, exhibited the strange spectacle of 
a Legislature elected by universal suffrage deliberating 
under the protection of cannon pointed against its own 

1 Chartist Convention. 


constituents. In Italy the tide had not yet turned in 
favour of the Austrians, and they were still entrenched 
in their lines beyond the Mincio. Lord Palmerston 
foresaw that their success, even if it did come, would 
be but temporary. 

Carlton G.: June 15, 1848. 

Sire, — I was much obliged to Your Majesty for the letter 
which I had the honour of receiving from Your Majesty some 
little time ago ; and I am happy to have the opportunity which 
is thus afforded me of congratulating Your Majesty upon the 
continued tranquillity and stability of your kingdom. It would 
seem as if the storms which have shaken everything else all over 
the continent of Europe had only served to consolidate more 
firmly the foundations of Your Majesty's throne. As to France, 
no man nowadays can venture to prophesy from week to week 
the turn affairs may take in that unfortunate country. For 
many years past the persons in authority in France have worked 
at the superstructure of Monarchy without taking care of the 
foundation. Education and religion have been neglected, and 
power has now passed into the hands of a mob ignorant of the 
principles of government, of morality, and of justice ; and it is 
a most remarkable fact in the history of society that in a nation 
of thirty-five millions of men, who have now for more than half 
a century been in a state of political agitation, which, in general, 
forms and brings out able men, and who have during that time 
been governed by three dynasties, there is no public political 
man to whom the country looks up with confidence and respect, 
on account of his statesmanlike qualities and personal character 
combined ; and there is no prince whom any large portion of 
the nation would make any considerable effort to place as sove- 
reign on the throne. The principle of equality seems to have 
been fully carried out in one respect, and that is that all public 
men are equally without respect, and all candidates for royalty 
equally without following. 

As to poor Austria, every person who attaches value to the 
maintenance of a balance of power in Europe must lament her 
present helpless condition ; and every man gifted with ever so 
little foresight must have seen, for a long time past, that feeble- 
ness and decay were the inevitable consequences of Prince 
Metternich's system of government ; though certainly no one 
could have expected that the rottenness within would so soon 
and so completely have shown itself without. Lord Bacon says 


that a man who aims at being the only figure among ciphers is 
the ruin of an age ; and so it has been with Metternich. He 
has been jealous of anything like talent or attainment in indi- 
viduals, and of anything like life in communities and nations. 
He succeeded for a time in damming up and arresting the 
stream of human progress. The wonder is, not that the accu- 
mulated pressure should at last have broke the barrier and have 
deluged the country, but that his artificial impediments should 
have produced stagnation so long. 

I cannot regret the expulsion of the Austrians from Italy. 
I do not believe, Sire, that it will diminish the real strength nor 
impair the real security of Austria as a European Power. Her 
rule was hateful to the Italians, and has long been maintained 
only by an expenditure of money and an exertion of military 
effort which left Austria less able to maintain her interests else- 
where. Italy was to her the heel of Achilles, and not the shield 
of Ajax. The Alps are her natural barrier and her best de- 
fence. I should wish to see the whole of Northern Italy united 
into one kingdom, comprehending Piedmont, Genoa, Lombardy, 
Venice, Parma, and Modena ; and Bologna would, in that case, 
sooner or later unite itself either to that State or to Tuscany. 
Such an arrangement of Northern Italy would be most condu- 
cive to the peace of Europe, by interposing between France and 
Austria a neutral State strong enough to make itself respected, 
and sympathising in its habits and character neither with France 
nor with Austria ; while, with reference to the progress of civi- 
lisation, such a State would have great advantages, political, 
commercial, and intellectual. Such an arrangement is now, in 
my opinion, Sire, inevitable; and the sooner the Austrian 
Government makes up its mind to the necessity, the better con- 
ditions it will be able to obtain. If Austria waits till she be 
forcibly expelled — which she will soon be — she will get no con- 
ditions at all. 

I have the honour to be, Sire, 
Your Majesty's most obedient humble Servant, 


Soon after the first successes of the Italians the 
Austrian Government asked for the c good offices ' of 

Baron Hnmmelaner came from Vienna instructed 
to propose the erection of Lombardy into a separate 
duchy, with an Austrian prince, but under the suze- 



rainty of the Emperor. Lord Palmerston told him that 
things had gone too far for that. He then said that he 
would recommend to his Government the abandon- 
ment of Lombardy on condition that she took on her 
shoulders part of the Austrian debt. Lord Palmerston 
replied that, with Venice already in Italian hands, 
neither Charles Albert nor his people would be satisfied 
with this, and suggested that a part at least of Yenetia 
should be included. Baron Hummelauer then said that 
he would go back and submit this to his Government. 

It was certainly a tribute to British influence that 
it should have been sought thus early by a Power 
which was not at any rate very well inclined to the 
man who represented England with foreign nations. 

Prince Metternich had detested Canning, and nursed 
the greater part of his antipathy for the benefit of Can- 
ning's distinguished disciple. Prince Schwarzenberg, 
when he succeeded to Metternich's place, succeeded 
also to his prejudices, and brought at the same time a 
more passionate nature to bear. The consequence was 
that the spirit of Lord Palmerston's policy and pro- 
ceedings towards Austria was entirely misunderstood 
by the Imperial Cabinet. The preservation of the Aus- 
trian empire was one of the leading considerations 
which bore upon his different projects for the settle- 
ment of the Italian question. Certainly, in 1848, be 
apprehended its downfall, but he only participated in 
the fears of every statesman in Europe, including the 
Austrians themselves. To concentrate her resources 
upon her own important territories appeared, in the 
summer of that year, the only way for Austria to extri- 
cate herself from her difficulties, and to save her Ger- 
ma-v* crown. 

he following letters we find evidence of the 
gen '* feeling at the time, shared by the Austrians 
then res, that the independence of Lombardy was 
won. Lord Palmerston's suggestion as to the abdica- 
tion of the Emperor Ferdinand only anticipated what 
took place some months later. The present Emperor, 


at that time, ' the lad of sixteen or twenty,' mounted 
the throne, saved the Austrian empire, and has since 
shown himself a wise and patriotic ruler. 

F. 0.: April 21, 1848. 
My dear Ponsonby, — I have, at the request of Dietrichstein, 1 
instructed Abercromby to recommend to the Sardinian Govern- 
ment a suspension of arms, in order to give Count Hartig an 
opportunity of trying negotiation with the Milanese ; but the 
Buccess or failure of Abercromby's application will depend en- 
tirely upon the state of military operations at the time when my 
despatch reaches him ; and, to say the truth, I have little expec- 
tation that his application will be successful, unless for the 
attainment of an armistice of a few days. Of course, the Sar- 
dinians and Lombards will consider the armistice as a pretence 
by which to gain time for the advance of Austrian reinforcements 
under Count Nugent. I have received your note stating the 
three degrees of arrangement which Hartig is authorised to pro- 
pose, 'fiie first and second, I am quite sure, will not be listened 
to. Things have gone much too far to admit of the possibility 
of any future connection between the Italians and Austria. 
Either of those two first arrangements might have been received 
with thankfulness six months ago, but they now come too late. 
Whether the third will be agreed to or not, will probably de- 
pend on the turn which the war will have taken. If the 
Austrian* still retain a strong miHtary position, from which 
they could not be driven without much expense of time, blood, 
and money, the Italians may consent to buy them out ; but even 
in this case there will most likely be a wide difference between 
what one party asks and what the other would give. If, on the 
other hand, the Austrians should be evidently losing ground when 
Hartig arrives, the chances are that the Italians will not consent 
to pay anything to Austria, and will only agree to give the 
Austrian troops a lascia passage for their retreat to their own 
homes. I certainly quite agree with you and your Austrian 
friend that Austria would be much better out of Italy than in 
it. Italy can never now be a useful possession for Austria. 
National antipathy has been so powerfully excited that Lom- 
hardy could be kept only by the sword, and that tenure would, 
under the most favourable circumstances, be very insecure, and 
would render the occupation far more expensive than valuable. 
I should say that the Austrians would be right in trying to 

1 Austrian ambassador in London. 


drive a good bargain with the Lombards, provided they do not 
stand out too long, nor for terms over-high : anything would be 
better than a prolonged contest ; for that would infallibly bring 
the French into the conflict, and then Austria would have on 
her hands a war which every prudential reason should teach her 
not to provoke, though, of course, she would meet it stoutly if it 
came upon her unprovoked and without any reason. 

On the whole, the conclusion to which I should come is, 
that the cheapest, best, and wisest thing which Austria can do, 
is to give up her Italian possessions quietly and at once, and to 
direct her attention and energy to organising the remainder of 
her coast territories, to cement them together, and to develop 
their abundant resources. But to do this there ought to be 
some able men at the head of affairs, and our doubt is whether 
there are any such now in office. First and foremost, what is 
the animal implumis bipes called Emperor? A perfect nullity; 
next thing to an idiot. What is the man who would succeed if 
the Emperor was to die 1 A brother scarcely a shade better 
than the Emperor. Who comes next? A lad of sixteen or 
twenty ; and what else he is, nobody seems to know ; but what- 
ever he may become hereafter, he cannot now be competent to take 
any part in political affairs. If the next heir to the crown were 
a man of energy and capacity, I should say that the only way of 
saving Austria would be to persuade the Emperor to abdicate 
in favour of that successor ; and I presume that if the Emperor 
was told that he must abdicate, he would do as he was bid. 
But to do any good in this way would require three successive 
abdications, so as to set aside the present, the next, and the 
next but one Emperor, and thus to pave the way for the acces- 
sion of the Archduke John, though I do not know that even 
then we should be in the regular line of succession. But every- 
body seems to agree that he is the best man, if not the only 
man, among them all. Now, three abdications are not easily 
obtained without a revolution ; even after the three glorious 
days of July there were only two, namely, that of Charles & 
and that of the Duke of Angouleme. But the Archduke John 
might be brought forward and be placed in some situation of 
commanding influence. These are not times for standing upon 
ceremonies, and the Austrian empire is a thing worth saving. 
You cannot do amiss by suggesting this to any persons who may 
have influence in such matters. 

And a few weeks later, in another letter, he says :— 


How can an empire stand in these days without an emperor 
at its head % And by an emperor I mean a man endowed with 
intellectual faculties suited to his high station. A mere man of k 
straw, a Guy Faux, like the present Emperor, may do very well 
in quiet times, when a Metternich, who never leaves his study, 
can govern a great country by his unopposed will, and can draw 
on, by his personal influence, various other Governments, de- 
spotic like his own, to pursue the same policy, to prevent all 
improvement, to stifle all symptoms of life among nations, and 
to enforce the stillness of death, and to boast that such a state 
of tranquillity is a proof of contentment and a guarantee for 
happiness. But the present year has dashed Europe abruptly 
in a far different condition. There is a general fight going on 
all over the Continent between governors and the governed, 
between law and disorder, between those who have and those 
who want to have, between honest men and rogues ; and as the 
turbulent, the poor, and the rogues are in this world, though 
perhaps not always the most numerous, at all events the most 
active, the other classes require for their defence to be led and 
headed by intelligence, activity, and energy. But how can these 
qualities be found in a Government where the sovereign is 
an idiot % Pray, then, tell Wessemberg from me, but in the ' 
strictest confidence, that I would entreat of him and his col- 
leagues to consider, for the salvation of their country, whether 
some arrangement could not be made by which the Emperor 
might abdicate, for which his bodily health might furnish a fair 
reason, while some more efficient successor might ascend the 
throne in his stead. I fear that his next brother is little better 
than he is ; but could not the son of that brother be called to 
the succession ? And though he is young, he yet could mount 
his horse, and show himself to his troops and his people, could 
•excite some enthusiasm for his person as well as for his official 
station, and, by the aid of good Ministers and able generals, 
might re-establish the Austrian empire in its proper position at 
home and abroad. I am sure that Wessemberg will forgive the 
liberty I am taking, but the maintenance of the Austrian em- 
pire is an object of general interest to all Europe, and to no 
country more than England. 

"Whatever chance, however, the Italians may have 
had of being able to cope single-handed with the Ans- 
trians was thrown away by a want of cordial co-opera- 
tion between their different forces. They soon lost all 


the ground which they had gained. Complete victory 
crowned the efforts of Marshal Badetsky, and Milan 
surrendered on August 6. 

The question of mediation between Austria and 
Sardinia had been under discussion between Prance 
and England previously to the great reverses sustained 
by the Sardinian troops. When their utter destruc- 
tion seemed inevitable, and intelligence of the capture 
of Milan was daily expected, the French Government 
represented that nothing but an assurance that Eng- 
land would join in mediation could prevent them from 
marching to the assistance of the Sardinians ; l and so 
urgent were they on this point, that Lord Normanby, 
before he received his instructions, found it indispen- 
sable, on the faith of a private letter from Lord Pal- 
merston, to engage that England would concur. The 
instruction to this effect was sent to Lord Normanby 
on August 7, and with it were sent instructions to be 
forwarded to Lord Ponsonby and Mr. Abercromby in 
the event of the French Government agreeing to the 
basis of mediation laid down by Lord Falmerston. 
Even if the French Government had not concurred, 
the instructions were to be sent on, in order that those 
Ministers might tender the single mediation of England 
between the contending parties. 

France, however, joined with England, and an armis- 
tice was concluded between the contending parties. 
Then ensued a long and infructuous negotiation. The 
object of Lord Palmerston was to persuade Austria, 
while retaining Venice, to give up Lombardy, and re- 
ceive in money an equivalent for its loss. 

F. O. : August 31, 1848. 
My dear Ponsonby, — The real fact is that the Austrians have 
no business in Italy at all, and have no real right to be there. 
The right they claim is founded upon force of arms and the 

1 General Oudinot came to Paris for orders, and told Cavaignactnat 
if he was not allowed to lead his army to Italy to assist Charles Albert, 
his army would go without him, and that many of his officers had 
already gone privately to offer their services. 


Treaty of Vienna. The Treaty of Vienna they themselves set 
it nought when they took possession of Cracow, and they have 
never fulfilled their engagement to give national institutions 
and a national representation to their Polish subjects. They 
cannot claim the treaty when it suits their purpose, and at the 
same time, when it suits their purpose, reject it. Moreover, 
there was no guarantee in the Treaty of Vienna for any of its 
arrangements, except for those relating to Prussian Saxony and 
to Switzerland. But we offer them an equivalent for that which 
they are called upon to give up, and they get, therefore, a sub- 
stitute for what the treaty assigned them. 

As to their title founded on force, force may be employed to 
defeat it, and with just as much right. 

But the people at Vienna think, perhaps, that force will not 
be so employed. If that is their opinion, the sooner they are 
undeceived the better. I know very well that Metternich and 
others here keep up an active correspondence with Germany, 
and no doubt amuse their correspondents at Vienna with all 
kinds of hopes and expectations of the support which Austria 
will receive on this Italian question from hence, and of the want 
of power in France to go to war. Wessemberg knows Metter- 
nich and England well enough not to be misled by these tales of 
emigrants. He well knows that private and personal intrigues 
can accomplish nothing here ; and he will easily understand that 
Metternicli will do no more than was Zuylen able to accomplish, 
nor even so much. Pray request him not to be misled on this 
point. And as to the interference of France, it will be given if 
Austria is stubborn ; and if a French army enters Italy, the 
Austrians will be driven, not to the Mincio, or to the Adige, or 
to Piave, but clean over the Alps. I do not wish to see the 
French in Italy ; there are a great many strong and weighty 
reasons why I should dislike it ; but I would rather that they 
should go in than that the Austrians should retain Lombardy ; 
and the people at Vienna may depend upon it that if, owing to 
their obstinacy, our mediation should fail, the French will enter 
Italy, and with the consent of England, and we shall not then 
be content with Hummelauer's Memorandum. 

Providence meant mankind to be divided into separate 
nations, and for this purpose countries have been founded by 
natural barriers, and races of men have been distinguished by 
separate languages, habits, manners, dispositions and characters. 
There is no case on the globe in which this intention is more 
marked than that of the Italians and the Germans, kept apart 


by the Alps, and as unlike in everything as two races can be. 
Austria has never possessed Italy as part of her empire, but has 
always held it as a conquered territory. There has been no 
mixture of races. The only Austrians have been the troops and 
the civil officers. She has governed it as you govern a garrison 
town, and her rule has always been hateful. We do not wish 
to threaten ; but it is the part of a friend to tell the truth, and 
the truth is that Austria cwrmot, and must not, retain Lombardy ; 
and she ought to think herself well enough off by keeping Vene- 
tia, if, indeed, that province is really advantageous to her. They 
will twit you at Vienna with Ireland, and say what should we 
reply if they were to ask us to give up Ireland ; but the cases 
are wholly different. In Ireland the races are mixed, and almost 
amalgamated ; and, at all events, the Celts are in Scotland, and 
Wales, and Cornwall, as well as in Ireland. The language is 
the same ; for English is spoken all over Ireland, and the land, 
and wealth, and intelligence of the country is for the connection. 
None of this can be said of Italy in regard to Austria. 

Time presses. The French are growing very impatient. We 
are holding them back, because we wish these things to be settled 
amicably ; but they cannot be withheld much longer ; and if the 
mediation is refused, some energetic decision will infallibly be 
taken. Exert yourself to the utmost to prevent a crisis, which 
must end in the humiliation of Austria. 

North of the Alps, we wish her all the prosperity and success 
in the world. Events have rendered it unavoidable that she 
should remain, in some shape or other, south of the Alps, and 
as far west as the Adige. Beyond that line, depend upon it, she 
cannot stay. 

Brussels, after many pourparlers, was fixed upon as 
the place of meeting for the mediation Conference. But 
Lord Palmerston writes to point out that at such a con- 
ference nothing but matters of detail could be settled. 
The principles must be conceded beforehand. 

Brocket : November 12, 1848. 

My dear Ponsonby, — The true and real seat of the negotiation 
is Vienna, and, unless the Austrian Government agree to onr 
proposed basis for an arrangement, I foresee no good to come 
out of the mediation ; and as sure as fate Austria will find her- 
self involved in a serious war before next Midsummer Day. It 
is totally and absolutely impossible that she can keep quiet 


ision of the Italian provinces ; and all you hear at Vienna 
j contrary is nothing but the bon d, dire of the Metternich 
I, and is the result of the established practice of the dis- 
of that school, to go on asserting as facts that which they 
to be false, but wish to be true, under the absurd notion 
>y frequent repetition falsehood may become truth. The 
xmsequence of this system is, that those who act upon it 
iose who are misled by it govern their conduct upon en- 
erroneous data; and the results of such false policy are, 
uen like Metternich and Guizot meet in exile in London ; 
sovereigns like Louis Philippe drink unwholesome water 
tour small beer at Claremont, instead of champagne and 
at the Tuileries ; and that ancient empires like Austria 
crown into anarchy and confusion, and are brought to the 
rerge of dissolution. 

quite understand the drift and meaning of Prince Windisch- 
s message to our Queen ; but pray make the Camarilla 
stand that, in a constitutional country like England, these 
9 cannot answer ; and that a foreign Government which 
\ its reliance upon working upon the Court against the 
•nment of this country is sure to be disappointed. 

.ustria, however, was not in a temper either for 
>n or conciliation. 

Broadlands: December 28, 1848. 

y dear Abercromby, — I have received your letter with the 
lese paper enclosed in it. I am very glad that you pre- 
i Campbell from taking any official notice of the attack 
me which that paper contains. All I should wish is that 
.ttack should be circulated and read from one end of Italy, 
•om one end of Europe to another. As regards the Aus- 
i it shows that our Austrian policy has excited the old- 
nish anger of some very small minds at Vienna ; and the 
>f punishing us for our course by not sending an Archduke 
nidon to announce the accession of the Emperor is truly 
eteristic of the State policy of European China ; one should 
apted to laugh at it outright if one did not feel grieved to 
e destinies of a great empire in the hands of men who can 
Lve and boast of such a childish revenge. Ponsonby wrote 
ord that Schwarzenberg had announced to him that no 
luke would be sent, because they would not place a member 
i Imperial family in contact with a person who had proved 
If so great an enemy as I have shown myself to be of 



Austria. I told Ponsonby in reply, that I am sincerely grateful 
to the Austrian Government for having spared me the trouble 
and inconvenience which, amid a heavy pressure of business, 
such a mission would have occasioned to me. I am almost 
afraid, however, from what I have since heard, that they have 
thought worse of their first determination, and that some Arch* 
duke is coming to us. As to the Abuse of me and my policy in 
the newspaper of Milan, I look upon all it says, considering 
whence it comes, as a compliment ; and if there is any truth in 
the saying, Noscitur a sociis, I feel much obliged to the writers 
for classing me with three of the most enlightened statesmen of 
the present day — Espartero, Reshid Pasha, and Mavrocordato. 
As to the warlike announcements of the Italians, they must, I 
fear, end in smoke or in defeat. I heartily wish that Italy waft 
piu forte; but weak as she is, a contest single-handed with 
Austria would only lead to her more complete prostration, and 
I doubt whether France is as yet quite ready to take the field in 
her support. I do not wish to see Italy emancipated from the 
Austrian yoke by the help of French arms, but perhaps it would 
be better it should be so done than not done at all; and if it were 
so done at a time when England and France were well together, 
we might be able to prevent any permanently bad consequences 
from resulting from it. But the great object at present is to 
keep things quiet ; to re-establish peace in Northern Italy, and 
to trust to future events for greater improvements. 

Austria never sent a plenipotentiary to Brussels. The 
mediation and the Conference fell to the ground. In 
the spring of 1849 the armistice came to an end, and the 
disaster of Novara sealed the fate of Italian independence 
for another ten years. The British Government, how- 
ever, did not cease its efforts to obtain better terms for 
the conquered. There was the question of payment for 
the expenses of the war. This still offered an oppor- 
tunity of being of service to the Italians. 

The following letter was in reply to one from the 
Premier finding fault with a despatch as being too ' dry 
and disparaging ' to Austria. Admiral Cecille was French 
Minister in London. The Eussians were occupying the 
Principalities, in consequence of their intervention on 
the revolt of Hungary. 


Broadlands: April 9, 1849. 

My dear John Russell, — I merely repeat in my draft what 
{Jecille said a few days ago. He said that, as a Frenchman and 
looking merely to French interests, he could not object to the 
heaviness of the proposed payment, because it would necessarily 
tend to weaken Piedmont and drive her into the arms of France ; 
but he thought it a measure as cruel and oppressive as it was 
for Austrian interests impolitic. I do not see why we should 
follow the Tory example, and abandon our friends merely be- 
cause they have been unfortunate ; and if it is said that the 
Turin Government and Charles Albert made war against our 
advice and in defiance of common sense, it ought to be borne in 
mind that it is not Charles Albert nor the late Turin Govern- 
ment by whom the contribution is to be paid, and that the 
pressure of the infliction will fall upon those who had no share 
in the folly of which it professes to be the punishment. General 
recommendations of moderation will be of no avail ; if we want 
to produce any effect at Vienna, we must come to specific de- 

There is no doubt that, as you say, the present moment is 
one full of danger ; but I should hope that a firm attitude on 
onr part, assumed in conjunction with France, may avert any 
serious or permanent consequences. Austria seems to have 
paused in Italy, and not to have sent troops as yet to Florence 
and Rome. But there is evidently a close connection between 
Austria and Russia, not closer, however, than has existed at 
«ny time since the French Revolution of 1830 ; and we are so 
far better off than we have hitherto been, that there are only 
Wo Powers linked together instead of three, as there used to be, 
as Prussia has broken off and looks to be the leading Power of 
independent Germany instead of being the kettle tied to the 
tftQ of her two great militaiy neighbours. When Minto was at 
Berlin, and wanted to know the policy and views of Prussia 
upon any great question, we used to be told that we must go 
and ask St. Petersburg and Vienna. That serfdom is now 

You say that we must either support France or court Aus- 
tria. I believe that by the first course we may restrain France, 
and control both Austria and Russia ; by the second course, if 
pushed beyond civility, and carried to the extent of any sacrifice 
of truth, principle, or justice, we should lose France without 
gaining Austria, just as we should lose our supporters at home 
without conciliating a single Tory. Austria keeps hold on to 


Russia for the present, as a bad swimmer keeps close to a good 
one. She has hard and heavy work to do in Hungary, Tran- 
sylvania, and other provinces, and the Russian armies are at 
hand to help her if need be. We cannot outbid Russia in these 
matters ; no fair words of ours can outweigh the fine divisions 
of the Autocrat. It is unfortunate for Austria and for Europe 
that the Austrian Government should place itself in this state 
of dependence upon Russia, because it disqualifies Austria from 
being hereafter a check upon Russian ambition and encroach- 
ment * Hold your tongue/ the Russians will say, ' and remem- 
ber that we saved you from dismemberment and ruin. 1 Per- 
haps the Austrians may not, if they become strong, mind such 
reproaches; but still this sort of military assistance must be 
paid for one way or another. However, we must hope for the 
best ; and if England and France are steady, I have no doubt 
we shall get the Russians out of the Principalities. Austria, 
be she ever so subservient to Russia, cannot submit to see her 
get possession of those military positions; and Russia, not 
knowing the full extent of the moral prostration of England as 
a European Power, would not lightly encounter the risk of 
being opposed by England, France, and Turkey united; and 
Turkey is now in a much more respectable condition as to 
her army and navy than she was in during the campaigns of 

In August, Massimo D'Azeglio sent from Turin an 
acknowledgment of Lord Palmerston's aid to Italy in 
the negotiation. 

Au moment ou nous venons de conclure la paix avec l'Au- 
triche, je manquerais a un de mes principaux devoirs, si, inter- 
prete des sentimens dont le Cabinet de S. M. est anime, je ne 
m'empressais de faire parvenir a Yotre Excellence le tribut de 
notre vive gratitude pour le bienveillant appui que, dans le 
sincere inter&t qu'elle porte a l'ltalie et surtout au Piemont, 
Yotre Seigneurie a bien voulu nous prater, durant le cours de 
nos longues et dimciles negotiations. Le Roi et son Gouverne- 
ment, qui avaient invoque cet appui avec une entiere confiance, 
se plaisent a reconnaitre que c'est principalement a son efficacite 
qu'ils doivent d'avoir obtenu des conditions meilleures, et telles 
que pouvaient les admettre la dignite et rhonneur toujours in- 
tacts du Piemont. L'assistance soutenue que nous avons ren- 
contre de la part de Y. S. a d'autant plus de prix a nos yeux, 


qu'en realisant Fesperance foridee que nous avions d'arriver avec 
son secours a ce resultat, elle nous a donne une nouvelle preuve 
de la constanoe et de la franche et loyale amiti6 qui unit, depuis 
font de siecles, la Sardaigne et 1* Angleterre, sa plus puissante et 
sa plus fi dele alliee. 

Before the end of the session the leader of the Pro- 
tectionist party in the Commons made a final effort to 
gain the sanction of the House to the principles of com- 
mercial policy which he had espoused. He accordingly 
moved for a Select Committee on the state of the nation* 
He asserted that distress and disgrace had been pro- 
gressive since the accession to power of the Whig 
Administration. Sir Eobert Peel warmly supported the 

C. G. : July 7, 1849. 

My dear William, — Our session is drawing to a close, and 
wQl probably finish by the first week in August. After all the 
trumpetings of attacks that were to demolish first one and then 
another member of the Government — first me, then Grey, then 
Charles Wood — we have come triumphantly out of all debates 
and divisions, and end the session stronger than we began it. 
Our division this morning, on Disraeli's motion * On the State 
of the Nation/ was 296 to 156 — a majority of 140 ! on a motion 
declared to be a question of confidence or no confidence in the 

The French are by this time in Home. 1 I send you de- 
spatches explaining our views on these matters. If you have an 
opportunity of mentioning them to the Neapolitan Ministers, 
take those despatches for your text, and say that it is impossible 
that the Pope can return to Rome — or even if he returned, 
that he could permanently maintain himself — unless he grants, 
or confirms rather, to the Romans the Constitution which he 
gave them last year ; and the Neapolitan Government would 
be contributing usefully to the peace of Italy and would be 
promoting the interests of the Pope, if they were to concur 
with France in strongly urging the Pope to pursue such a course. 
It is by no means certain that he would be taken back by the 
Romans even on those conditions, but the probability is that 

1 Lord Palmerston once said, when asked for an illustration of the 
inference between ( business ' and * occupation,' « The French undertook 
he occupation of Borne, but they had no business there.' 


he would ; and it is almost a certainty that upon any other con- 
ditions he would be rejected. 

If it should be impossible to bring the Pope and his subjects 
to terms, a very inconvenient state of things will arise. The 
French will never allow the Pope to be forced back uncondi- 
tionally on the Romans ; some other independent Government 
must therefore be established at Borne, that would perhaps be 
a republic ; and a republic at Borne would be an inconvenient 
neighbour for the King of Naples. But for my part, I should 
not see any insurmountable objection to acknowledging such a 
Government, if the return of the Pope on the basis of a Consti- 
tution should be impossible. Colloredo has always said to me 
that the Austrians do not insist upon the unconditional return 
of the Pope. It seems quite clear that the Pope never can 
again be what he has been, and that his spiritual power will be 
much diminished by the curtailment or loss of his temporal 
authority. This is surely a good thing for Europe, both Ca-* 
tholic and Protestant, and if it ends in very much nationalising 
and localising the Catholic Church in every country, that alone 
will be a great point gained, and will be a material step in the 
progress of human society. 

Lord Brougham was this session in one of 
harassing moods, and had given notice of a motion in 
the House of Lords, expressive of regret that the Govern- 
ment had shown in its conduct of foreign affairs a want 
of friendly feelings towards the allies of Great Britain. 
Lord Palmerston availed himself of the notice given to 
press on the French their questionable conduct at Borne. 

F. O.: July 16, 1849. 

My dear Normanby, — The debate on Brougham's motion on 
Friday will turn chiefly on Italian affairs, and of course Sicily, 
Lombardy, and Borne will be the main topics on which Broug- 
ham, Stanley, and Aberdeen — the three witches who have filled 
the cauldron — will dilate. As to Sicily and Lombardy, our 
Peers will be at no loss what to say ; but the Boman affair is 
not so clear, and it would be very useful — not only for us, but, 
as it seems to me, for the French Government — if Lansdowne 
and whoever else may speak on our side from the Ministerial 
bench, were able to say something positive and definitive as to 
the intentions of the French Government. 

The questions which will naturally be asked are : In what 


character has the French army taken possession of Rome 1 — is 
it as conquerors of a city to be added to France ? Of course 
not; that answer is easily given. Is it then as friends of the 
Pope, or as friends of the Roman people 1 This question it is 
hard to answer ; and for us, unaided by the French Govern- 
ment, impossible. 

My own belief is that the priestly and Absolutist party is 
heginning to prevail in the French Cabinet about the affairs of 
Borne, and that the French Government is preparing to re- 
establish the Pope, leaving it to his generosity (which is like 
the honour of Shakespeare's knight) to grant de novo to his 
subjects such reforms of the Gregorian abuses as he may on re- 
consideration think expedient ; but that they, the French, and 
he, the Pope, are to concur with the Cardinals, the priests, the 
Austrians, the Neapolitans, and the Spaniards in deeming all 
. that was done by the Pope last year as null and void. Now, 
such a course would be well enough for Schwarzenberg, Nar- 
vaez, Ferdinand of Napl&s, and Lambruschini, but it would be 
highly discreditable to the French Government. 

Tocqueville may say, ' But if we propose conditions to the 
Pope, he will refuse them, and what are we to do then ? — are 
we to remain for ever at Rome ; or are we to go out, and let 
either the Austrians or Garibaldi in ? ' My answer would be, 
that if they who are in possession of Rome make the Pope and 
his Cardinals and the Austrian Government clearly understand 
that the Pope cannot come back except upon the before-men- 
tioned conditions, the Pope will put his allocution of April 20 
into a drawer, and will accept the conditions. But if he refuses : 
what then 1 Why, if I was the French Government, I would 
then say that I withdrew my interference, and should leave the 
Pope and the Romans to settle their disputes as they could ; 
but that I would not allow Austria, or Naples, or Spain to exer- 
cise any interference either ; and that, in withdrawing my 
troops from Rome, I would, if it was worth while, require from 
the Roman Municipality, or whatever the ruling authorities 
▼ere, that no foreigners — that is to say, no persons not Italians 
—should be admitted to power within the city. I say not 
Italians, for it is pedantry to call men belonging to other parts 
of Italy ' strangers ' at Rome. 

But the French would say, ' The result of this would be the 
continuance of a republic at Rome.' Well, and what if it was 1 
It would not be the first time that an Italian adopted a repub- 
lican form of government ; and it cannot be feared that the 


modern republic of Rome would conquer Europe, like its anojgf 

My own belief is that, sooner or later, Rome will becomes 
republic, and that nothing but overruling and foreign milteiq 
force can prevent such a result. There are mutually repellflg 
properties between a reasoning people and an elective prjesNjp 
Government. The Roman people have tasted too much of tha 
spring of knowledge, both religious and political, during th# 
last fourteen months — or, I may say, now nearly three yea»* 
not to be determined to ' drink deep/ and in the present statytf 
Europe no human power can long prevent them from so doH# 
The Papal supremacy, both spiritual and political, has reodMI 
an earthquake shake from which it never can recover, an4«J 
that can be done is to patch up the rent as well as circumsten## 
permit, so that the fabric may last for a time ; but there wffl 
be shock after shock, till it all crumbles to the ground. Bi 
Catholic Powers say to the Romans that they must submit to 
the worst and most anomalous Government in the civilised wcrit 
because they are Papists ; the Roman people will ere long Wfty 
by saying, ' We are no longer Papists ; take your Pope anl 
give him as sovereign to those who are Papists still.' ' 

The Reformation in Europe was as much a movement te 
shake off political oppression as it was to give freedom to raK- 
gious conscience, and similar causes are apt to produce similar 

F. O. : July 24, 1849. 

My dear William, — We are finishing our session ; the pi^ 
rogation will be next Tuesday or Wednesday. We end ft 
triumphantly in the Lords as well as in the Commons ; and 1 
individually leave off, as I began, with a personal victory, ft* 
the motion by Brougham last week was in fact aimed at fl* e 
specially. 1 

I had an opportunity on Saturday of paying off Aberdeen 
for his repeated and very ungentlemanlike attacks upon me. J 
just gave him enough to show him that, if I had thought ^ 
worth while, I could have given him more ; and the House O 
Commons was quite with me, at least the members present. 

This was in a debate on the Hungarian war. Severn 
Liberal members took the opportunity of replying t 4 
speeches made in a reactionary spirit in the House o 

1 It was rejected by a majority of 12. 


Lords. Lord Palmerston, in the course of his remarks, 

said: — 

There are some persons who see in the relations of countries 
nothing but the intercourse of Cabinets. It is not as the ancient 
ally of England during war ; it is not as the means of resistance 
in the centre of Europe to any general disturbance of the balance 
of power ; it is as the form or symbol of resistance to improve- 
ment, political and social, that Austria has won the affections of 
some men in the conduct of public affairs. Sir, there are men 
who, having passed their whole lives in adoring the Govern- 
ment of Austria, because they deemed it the great symbol of the 
opinions which they entertained, at last became fickle in their 
attachment, and transferred their allegiance to the Government 
of Prance, because they thought that in that Government they 
saw an almost equal degree of leaning to the arbitrary principle, 
and because they, forsooth, suspected the Government of designs 
hostile to the interests of freedom. We have heard of persons 
of that sort making use of the expression old women. 1 Public 
men ought not to deal in egotism, and I will not apply to them 
the expression that has fallen from their own mouth. I will 
only say that the conduct of such men is an example of anti- 
quated imbecility. 

The following letter to Mr. Charles Murray, the Con- 
sul-General at Alexandria — though stating what is well 
known to all Englishmen as the rale of our public 
service — would astonish the great men of some other 
countries, where presents are regarded as a considerable 
source of official remuneration : — 

F. O. : August 30, 1849. 

My dear Murray, — In working up the chaotic arrear which 
accumulates during a session of Parliament, I have come upon 
your letter of the 10th May, in which you say that Ahmed Bey, 
the eldest son of Ibrahim Pasha, had intimated an intention of 
sending me some horses as a present. I hope no inconvenience 
will have arisen from my not having answered your letter 
sooner ; but if he should mention his intentions to you again, I 

1 Lord Aberdeen, a few days before, in a laboured attack upon Lord 
Palmerston's policy, had said that Lord Minto had only been received 
by the King of Naples for the same reason that the ' old woman ' of 
Syracuse 'acquiesced in the tyranny of Dionysius — lest the devil should 
come next.' 

H 2 


wish you to say that you will make known to me his kind in- 
tention, and that you are sure that I shall be much flattered by 
the intended compliment, and much gratified by the friendly 
feeling of which it is a proof ; but that you know that it is a 
positive and invariable rule for British Ministers not to accept 
presents of any kind from anybody, and that, consequently, 
although there is nobody from whom I should be more gratified 
by receiving such a mark of goodwill, I should be obliged, as ft 
matter of duty, to decline the present, and it is better, therefore, 
that he should let the matter drop. 1 

There was one form of present, however, which hi 
position did not forbid him to accept, and which, under 
the circumstances, was even more gratifying than ft 
horse from a Pasha* Just before the end of the session 
he received a deputation of members of the House of 
Commons, who asked him to sit for a full-length por- 
trait, to be given by them to Lady Palmerston, 8 as ft 
small memento of his great abilities, high honour, 
noble-minded independent policy, warm-heartedness, i 
and worth/ 

As soon as he gets out of town he sends his brother - 
the local news, and an account of his country pursuits. \ 

Brocket : September 23, 1849. 

The present moment is the moment of reaction in Europe. 
The Revolutionists have had their swing ; the tide is turned, 
and the Absolutists are for the time in the ascendant. But 
this state of things cannot last, and the Governments of Europe 
cannot finally settle down into the same practice of abuses and 
oppressions which was the real cause of the outbreaks of last 

Here in England everything is quiet. Our harvest is good, 
and the potatoes not much diseased ; trade and manufactures 
are rallying, and all interests tolerably well off. Cholera has 
been very active, and has been so spread over the country that 
hardly any place or town has been exempt from it. But it may 
almost everywhere be traceable to noxious effluvia, arising 
from accumulations of dirt and of animal and vegetable matter, 

1 The same rule applies to foreign 'orders.' Queen Elizabeth used 
to say that she would not allow 'her sheep to be tarred by another 


choked-up drains, stinking sewers, and things of that kind ; and 

few persons have anywhere been attacked by it who have not 

been exposed to these operating causes. There were several 

cases at Homsey at the end of July and in the beginning of 

August, but none since, and they were almost all in Banning 

Street and in the hundred, where bad drainage, or rather no 

drainage at all, occasioned the presence of bad exhalations. 

Emily, 1 who like other ladies, is nervous about these things, had 

a disinclination to go to Broadlands till cholera shall be quite 

over. "We were detained in London till the end of August by 

Lady Ashley's confinement, and since then we have been at 

Panshanger and here. It does not much matter to me where I 

am, as red boxes make almost all places equal. I am, however, 

very well, and yesterday managed to take four hours' partridge- 


Broadlands : January 1, 1850. 

Our shooting has been but indifferent, owing to a bad breed- 
ing season following upon two previous years of the same kind, 
together with a good poaching season at Romscy; but I have 
been able to get out three or four times with the hounds, which 
always does me more good than anything else. 

Our session will begin the last day of this month. We shall, 
probably, have a sharp fire from the Protectionists at starting ; 
but they can make no permanent or material impression either 
on the House or the country ; and they are wholly unable to 
form a Government, even if the offer to do so could be made to 

How do you get on with your demands on the Neapolitan 
Government for compensation for the merchants for losses 
during the civil war % We have given Parker instructions to 
go to Athens, when he leaves the seas of the Levant, and to 
back up Wyse in enforcing certain demands, which have been 
long pending before the Greek Government, for compensation 
for British subjects for various wrongs at different times done 
to them. When the account of Parker's visit to Athens reaches 
Naples, you may as well confidentially, and not in pursuance 
of instructions, but as the result of your own good wishes to 
avert disagreeable events from Naples, suggest to the Neapolitan 
Minister the possibility that Parker might receive orders to 
P&y a similar visit to Naples for a like purpose ; and that 
it might be as well for the Neapolitan Government to prevent 

1 Lady Palmerston. 


this by doing with a good grace that which, in such a case, 
they might find it best policy to do, although with a bad grace, 
and with some derogation to the dignity of the King. 

We shall come later on to the history of these demands 
upon the Greek Government, but the foregoing passage 
shows that the strong measures which Lord Palmerston 
felt himself bound to take at Athens were prompted 
not merely by wrongs endured there, but also by his 
conviction that, at many other points, the prestige of 
England would suffer, and difficulties would arise, if 
she allowed herself to be baffled in the East by a Power 
whose weakness was its strength, and duplicity its- 




Tie revolution at Vienna had been quickly followed by 
a rising in Hungary. The civil war raged for many 
months, and success had attended the Magyars, so far 
as operations in the field were concerned. In her dire 
strait Austria had called in the aid of Russia. The 
Emperor Nicholas quickly responded with 150,000 men, 
seeking to justify his act in the face of Europe by con- 
siderations of safety for his own possessions. This 
intervention decided the contest, and Hungary lay 
prostrate at the feet of the two great military empires. 
The sympathies of men like Lord Palmerston were with 
the Hungarians, because, if they were revolutionists, 
they were so in the same sense as the men to whose 
acts, at the close of the seventeenth century, it is owing 
that the present Royal Family of England, happily for 
the nation, are seated on the throne of these realms. 
Hungary had long had its separate Constitution, Par- 
liament, and laws. The crowns of Austria and Hungary 
had devolved upon one head, because the same person 
had by different and separate titles become, in order 
of succession, Sovereign of each of the two countries. 
The Emperor of Austria became King of Hungary 
ty virtue of his coronation at Pesth, on which occasion 
he took an oath to observe and maintain its Constitu- 
tion. The Austrian Cabinet wished entirely to destroy 
that Constitution, and incorporate Hungary with the 
^gregate mass of the empire. Whether this was 
or was not a good arrangement for the parties, the 


Imperial Government had no right to impose it by 
force without endeavouring to obtain the consent of 
the Hungarian Diet. This is, however, what they did, 
and the Hungarians were fully justified in resisting 
force by force. Supposing that at the time of the 
union of Scotland and England, the English Govern- 
ment, instead of proposing a Treaty of Union and 
obtaining the legal consent of the Scotch Parliament, 
had issued an Order in Council summarily terminating 
their separate existence and functions. The Scotch 
would have resisted. If then the King of England 
had sent his army over the Border to subdue the 
Scotch, and, finding the task too hard for him, had 
ended by calling in the French to help him, the parallel 
would have been complete. 

In the earlier part of the year Lord Palmerston had 
vainly attempted to mediate between the contending 
parties in Hungary, so as to avert the Russian inter- 
vention, of which he here chronicles the result : — 

F. 0. : August 22, 1849. 
My dear Ponsonby, — We heard yesterday from "Warsaw 
that which must be considered the conclusion of the war in 
Hungary. I must own I am glad that it is over, for though 
all our sympathies in this country are with the Hungarians, 
yet it was scarcely in the nature of things that they should be 
able, against such superior forces, to hold out long enough to 
compel the allies to treat with them on equal terms, and a pro- 
longation of the war would therefore only have led to the same 
result after the slaughter of many more thousands of brave men 
on both sides, and after still greater devastation of the country, 
than has already taken place. Now is the time for the Austrian 
Government to redeem itself in the opinion of Europe : a just 
and generous use of the success which has been gained would 
re-establish Austria in public estimation, and would again place 
her in the front rank among the great Powers of Europe. If 
the Austrian Government listens to passion, resentment, and 
political prejudice, they will enlist against them every generous 
and just mind in the civilised world, and will lay the founda- 
tion for permanent weakness and decrepitude in the Austrian 
empire. I shall write to you officially in this sense in a day or 


two ; but, in the meanwhile, shape your language to this effect. 
The thing evidently to be done is to re-establish the ancient 
Constitution of Hungary, with the improvements made in it 
last year, as to the abolition of feudal service, and exemption of 
privileged classes from public burthens, and'to publish^ real 
and complete amnesty. If Austria wishes for a legislative 
union with Hungary, it should be proposed in a legal way, like 
our unions with Scotland and Ireland, but I much fear that 
legislative assemblies are not in favour at present at Vienna ; 
and yet such assemblies founded upon election by intelligence 
and property, and not by universal suffrage, are the only sure 
foundations of public order and permanent monarchy. It will 
be curious if the Emperor of Russia should take the Hungarians 
under his protection as against the Austrians, just as he pro- 
tects the Danube Principalities against the Turks. 

The fight between the master and the revolted sub- 
jects had not merely been a calm and strategical 
encounter: it had been a war of passion, bitter and 
ferocious. I quote the following letter to illustrate the 
warmth and strong sympathy of Lord Palmerston's 
character. He bounded like a boy at any cruelty or 
oppression. Many years later, during his second Pre- 
miership, at the time when the Federal General Butler 
outraged public opinion by proclaiming at New Orleans 
that ladies who showed discontent either by their dress 
or demeanour would be treated like women of the town, 
he sent to the American Minister an indignant letter 
of remonstrance so strong and outspoken that Mr. 
Adams refused to receive it, and ran off with it to 
the Foreign Office in the utmost consternation. The 
youthful impulse of indignation against a cowardly 
bully never died out with him. It survived even in his 
old age, the advent of which is too often accompanied 
by cynical indifference to the sufferings of others : — 

Panshanger : September 9, 1849. 

The Austrians are really the greatest brutes that ever called 

themselves by the undeserved name of civilised men. Their 

atrocities in Galicia, in Italy, in Hungary, in Transylvania are 

only to be equalled by the proceedings of the negro race in 


Africa and Haiti. Their late exploit of flogging forty odd 
people, including two women at Milan, some of the victims 
being gentlemen, is really too blackguard and disgusting a pro- 
ceeding. As to working upon their feelings of generosity and 
gentlemanlikeness that is out of the question, because such feel- 
ings exist not in a set of officials who have been trained up in 
the school of Metternich, and the men in whose minds such in- 
born feelings have not been crushed by court and office power 
have been studiously excluded from public affairs, and can only 
blush in private for the disgrace which such things throw upon 
their country. But I do hope that yon will not fail constantly 
to bear in mind the country and the Government which you 
represent, and that you will maintain the dignity and honour 
of England by expressing openly and decidedly the disgust 
which such proceedings excite in the public mind in this 
country ; and that you will not allow the Austrians to imagine 
that the public opinion of England is to be gathered from arti- 
cles put into the ' Times ' by Austrian agents in London, nor 
from the* purchased support of the ' Chronicle/ nor from the 
servile language of Tory lords and ladies in London, nor from 
the courtly notions of royal dukes and duchesses. I have no 
great opinion of Schwarzenberg's statesmanlike qualities unless 
he is very much altered from what he was when I knew him ; 
but, at least, he has lived in England, and must know some- 
thing of English feelings and ideas, and he must be capable of 
understanding the kind of injury which all these barbarities 
must do to the character of Austria in public opinion here; 
and I think that, in spite of his great reliance upon and fond- 
ness for Russia, he must see that the good opinion of England 
is of some value to Austria ; if for nothing else, at least to act 
as a check upon the illwill towards Austria, which he supposes, 
or affects to suppose, is the great actuating motive of the revo- 
lutionary firebrand who now presides at the Foreign Office in 
Downing Street. 

You might surely find an opportunity of drawing Schwar- 
zenberg's attention to these matters, which may be made intel- 
ligible to him, and which a British ambassador has a right to 
submit to his consideration. There is another view of the 
matter which Schwarzenberg, with his personal hatred of the 
Italians, would not choose to comprehend, but which, neverthe- 
less, is well deserving of attention, and that is the obvious 
tendency of these barbarous proceedings to perpetuate in the 
minds of the Italians indelible hatred of Austria ; and as the 


Austrian Government cannot hope to govern Italy always by 
sword, such inextinguishable hatred is not an evil altogether 
be despised. 

The rulers of Austria (I call them not statesmen or states- 
ten) have now brought their country to this remarkable 
ition, that the Emperor holds his various territories at the 
Iwill and pleasure of three external Powers. He holds 
ly just as long as and no longer than France chooses to let 
have it. The first quarrel between Austria and France 
drive the Austrians out of Lombardy and Venice. He holds 
and Galicia just as long as and no longer than Russia 
to let him have them. The first quarrel with Russia will 
those countries from the Austrian crown. He holds his 
inn provinces by a tenure dependent, in a great degree, upon 
and opinions which it will be very difficult for him and 
Ministers either to combine with or to stand out against. 
The remedy against these various dangers which are 
ndly undermining the Austrian empire would be generous 
ition ; but instead of that, the Austrian Government 
)w no method of administration but what consists in flog- 
imprisoning, and shooting. 'The Austrians know no 
lent but force/ 

As soon as Hungary was subdued, a joint demand 
%as made upon the Porte by Russia and Austria to 
deliver up the fugitives who had sought safety at 
^fiddin, within the Turkish frontier. Prince Radzivil 
■nd Baron de Titoff for Russia, and Count Stunner for 
Austria, urged at Constantinople the surrender of these 
Refugees, among whom were Kossuth and Zamoyski. 
^Ehe Sultan, however, firmly resisted this attempt to 
induce him to violate the laws of humanity by giving 
tip to the vengeance of the conquerors those who had 
ftd to his territory for refuge. As no threats could 
Shake the resolution of the Ottoman Government, the 
Embassadors notified to the Porte the suspension of all 
diplomatic intercourse between their own Courts and 
that of the Sultan. Lord Palmerston determined to 
Support the Sultan. 

Carlton Gardens : September 29, 1849. 
My dear Nonnanby, — I received yesterday afternoon, at 
Brocket, by a letter from Drouyn de Lhuys, the telegraphic 


message announcing the breaking off of diplomatic relations by 
the Austrian and Russian Ministers at Constantinople. I am 
unable at present to send you anything but my own opinion of 
the matter. I am much inclined to think that this step of the 
two Imperialist Ministers is only an attempt to bully, and that 
if it fails, as it seems hitherto to have done, it will be disavowed 
or retracted by their Governments. But then it seems to me 
that the only way of bringing about that result is to give the . 
Sultan the cordial and firm support of England and France, 
and to let the two Governments of Russia and Austria see that 
the Turk has friends who will back him and defend him in 
time of need. This might be done, first, by firm though friendly 
representations at Vienna and St. Petersburg, pointing out that 
the Sultan is not bound by treaty to do what has been required, 
and tha% not being so bound, he could not have done it without 
dishonour. Secondly, we might order our respective squadrons 
in the Mediterranean to take post at the Dardanelles, and to be 
ready to go up to Constantinople if invited by the Sultan, either 
to defend Constantinople from actual or threatened attack, or 
to give him that moral support which their presence in the 
Bosphorus would afford. I feel the most perfect conviction 
that Austria and Russia would not, in the present state of 
Germany, Poland, and Northern Italy, to say nothing of only 
half-pacified Hungary, venture upon a rupture with England, 
France, and Turkey upon such a question as this. But all this 
is only my own personal opinion, and I cannot answer for the 
Broadbrims of the Cabinet ; therefore do not, before you hear 
from me again, commit the Government to any opinion or to 
any course of action. 

The Russian ambassador in London lost no time hi 
calling on the Foreign Secretary. What took place ii 
told in the following Memorandum : — 

Carlton Gardens : October 2, 1849. 
I had a conversation of some length this afternoon with 
Baron Brunnow. His object at first was to show that the belt 
course for England and Frdhce to pursue was to remain per- 
fectly quiet, to wait for events, and to trust to the moderation 
and good feeling of the Emperor to settle the matter amicably 
with the Sultan, without any injury to the independence of the 
Porte. In other words, to leave the Emperor time to frighten 
the Sultan into acquiescence. 


I said I agreed with him that the affair is in itself of Very 
light importance, and that I could not but believe with him 
hat the moderation and good feeling of the two Imperial Govern- 
nents would lead them to respect the Sultan's repugnance to 
jive up men who have thrown themselves on his protection ; 
md that Austria and Russia would be satisfied with that secu- 
rity which they had a right to ask, and which the Sultan is ready 
to afford them, and which would be given by sending into the 
interior of Turkey such of the refugees as may have no means of 
supporting themselves, and by requiring those who are better off 
to leave Turkey and come to France or England. With regard 
to our doing nothing, I said we could not take that course, be- 
cause the Turkish Government had officially asked us for help in 
their embarrassment, and we had determined to address a friendly 
representation in favour of the Sultan to the Austrian and Rus- 
sian Governments. He said he hoped our representation would 
be carefully worded, in order that it might not do harm instead 
of good. That all men have their faults as well as their merits. 
That the fault of his Emperor is that he is very sensitive, and 
that anything like the language of menace might prevent him 
from doing what he might otherwise be disposed to do. I said 
that nothing of that kind would be sent ; that we should express 
our hope, and the French Government would probably do the 
same, that the two Emperors would be satisfied with the removal 
of clanger froxi their frontiers, and would not insist on the sur- 
render of men whom they would not know what to do with 
when they got them. For it would not be supposed, for in- 
stance, that the Emperor of Russia could take any pleasure in 
shooting a cripple like Bern. Brunnow said it would be a pity 
that such representations should be made by England and France 
jointly or concurrently ; that the joint action of the two would 
of itself have the appearance of something like menace. I said 
that this was the unavoidable result of the fact that the Porte 
had made application to the two Powers ; but he should remem- 
ber that this system of duality did not begin with us ; that the 
two Imperial Governments have been jointly pressing and 
threatening at Constantinople, ancjthe Sultan being hard driven 
by his two great, strapping neighbours, naturally looked about 
him to see where he could find two friends to come and take his 
part. That the two Imperial Ministers, no doubt from over- 
seal, or from a wish to carry their point by a coup de main, and 
jain credit with their Governments, had gone probably further 
han they had been instructed to do, and had not only held very 


high and threatening language, but had suspended thei 
matic intercourse, a thing of no real importance, but m 
a means of intimidation. I said that the two Imperial < 
ments were no doubt entitled to ask for the surrender < 
respective subjects, though the Russian demand, being 1 
upon the events of the Polish war of 1832, and not u 
Hungarian war of 1849, was somewhat out of date; b 
on the other hand, the Sultan was entitled by his tre 
decline to surrender, and to prefer the other alterna 
either sending the refugees into the interior of his terri 
requiring them to leave Turkey. Brunnow entirely agre 
me in this interpretation of the treaty between Rus 
Turkey. He said the Treaty of Kainardgi had, like all 
between Russia and Turkey, been drawn up by the J 
negotiators, and that they had purposely and intention* 
a choice, because it was much more likely that Turks w< 
to Russia than that Russians would fly to Turkey ; i 
Russian Government did not wish to be obliged to \ 
political refugees to be handed over to the bowstring, 
men guilty of ordinary criminal offences the case was di 
and the obligation more strict to give such persons up. Bi 
fully and distinctly admitted that the treaty, while it 
rised the Emperor to demand surrender, equally authori 
Sultan to decline surrender, and to prefer the sending ou 
country. And Brunnow's own opinion seemed to be t] 
Emperor would, or at least ought to, acquiesce in the i 
decision. But it must be borne in mind that his obj 
avowedly to persuade us to do nothing, and that he p: 
himself to be without communications from his own < 

There was considerable opposition in high qi 
to any interference on the part of England, bul 
Palmerston's colleagues acquiesced in his proposa 
he sends to Paris the decision arrived at. 

F. 0. : October 2, 
My dear Normanby, — The Cabinet met to-day, anc 
mined that the Sultan must be supported, and by all m« 
to all extent that may be necessary, and that for this ] 
the co-operation of France must be sought. What we 
to do is that which I stated in my private letter a few ds 
namely, that a friendly and civil representation should b 


to the two Governments at Vienna and Petersburg, to express 
a hope that the two Emperors will not press the Sultan to do 
that which a regard for his honour and for the laws of hos- 
pitality and the common dictates of humanity forbid him to do, 
and which no engagement of treaty binds him to do ; and, that, at 
the same time, the two squadrons should move up to the Darda- 
nelles, with orders to go up to Constantinople if invited so to do 
by the Sultan, either for his immediate defence, or to afford him 
moral support by their presence. Of course this decision in- 
volves a determination to go all further lengths that circum- 
stances may render necessary ; and we trust confidently that we 
shall be able to rely entirely upon the co-operation of France, 
and- also upon her being willing to be as moderate in the manner 
of making the first steps as she may be firm and determined as 
to ultimate results. I have seen the Turkish ambassador, who 
has written me a note asking the moral and material assistance 
of England. I have told him the decision of the Cabinet, and 
Ihat we are going to enter into communication with the French 
Government on the matter. He says that the Turkish squadron 
in. the Boephorus, and the Turkish military force round Con- 
fltantinople, are quite sufficient to secure Constantinople against 
any surprise by the fleet from Sebastopol. 

I have since seen Brannow, who professes to have heard 
nothing from Petersburg, and to know only what the papers 
report ; but he seems uneasy. He endeavours to represent the 
matter as one of small real importance. His object was to per- 
suade me that we ought to take no step, but wait to see what 
the Emperor would do, or at all events to delay ; that is to say, 
he wants us to give the Emperor full time to bully the Sultan 
upon this question, as we let him do some months ago about the 
Wallachian occupation. I told him that the Cabinet has deter- 
mined that representations should be made at Vienna and Peters- 
burg, but that we should take care to make them in such a 
manner as not to justify any mauvaise reponse. I said that the 
threatening language and deportment of Radzivil, Titoff, and 
Stiirmer had compelled the Porte to ask us for support, and that 
we could not under such circumstances abstain from friendly 
representations to the two Imperial Governments. I of course 
abstained from saying anything about squadrons or material 
assistance, but joined with him in considering it impossible that 
the Emperor should not be satisfied with the departure of his 
Poles from Turkey, observing that they must be very unreason- 
able men if they did not prefer France or England to Turkey as 
a residence. 



He also communicates the decision to the English 
Minister at Constantinople, who had strongly urged 
the Turkish Government to remain firm. 1 

Foreign Office: October 2, 1849. 
My dear Canning, — As it is of importance to relieve yon aa 
soon as possible from anxiety in regard to the responsibility 
which you may think you have incurred by the advice which 
you have given the Porte, and as it is also essential not to lose 
an hour unnecessarily in relieving the Porte from its doubts u 
to whether it will find aid and support from its friends, I send 
you this private letter by a special messenger, to say that the 
Cabinet has to-day decided to give an affirmative answer to the 
application for moral and material support which the Turkish 
ambassador, by order of his Government, has presented to us. 
We are, therefore, going to enter immediately into communica- 
tion with the Government of France, in order to settle the 
course of proceedings, assuming that which we cannot doubt, 
namely, that the French Government is willing and prepared to 
co-operate with us. What we mean to propose is, that the two 
Governments should make friendly and courteous representa- 
tions at Vienna and Petersburg to induce the Imperial Govern- 
ment to desist from their demands, urging that the Sultan is 
not bound by treaty to do what is asked of him, and that to do 
so would be dishonourable and disgraceful. We mean to pro- 
pose, at the same time, that the two Mediterranean squadrons 
should proceed at once to the Dardanelles, with orders to go up 
to the Bosphorus, if invited to do so by the Sultan, either to 
defend Constantinople from actual or imminent attack, or to 
give him the moral support which their presence would afford. 
I think it possible, however, that the admirals may already 
have gone up to the neighbourhood of the Dardanelles, in con' 
sequence of the letters they will have received from you and 

1 ' If I had suspended my support for a moment, the Porte, I have 
no doubt, would have given way ; and on almost any question but one 
involving such obvious considerations of humanity, honour, and per* 
manent policy, I might have been inclined, while left to myself, to 
counsel a less dangerous course, in spite of reason and right. As it 
is, I have felt that there was no alternative unattended with loss oi 
credit and character. The dishonour would have been ovrs, for everyone 
knows that even Rescind himself, with all his spirit and humanity's 
would not withstand the torrent without us, and France on almost 
every subject here follows in our wake, from the necessities of it* 
position and in generous reliance on your policy/ — Sir 8, Canning U 
Lord Pahnertton, Sej/t. 17, 1849. 


from Aupick. I think it, however, much better that the Porte 
should be advised not to send for the squadrons to enter the 
Dardanelles without real necessity. The example might be 
turned to bad account by the Russians hereafter ; and it would 
be too much of an open menace, and the way to deal with the 
Emperor is not to put him on his mettle by open and public 
menace. In this affair we are trying to catch two great fish, 
and we must wind the reel very gently and dexterously, not to 
break the line. The Government have indeed resolved to sup- 
port the Sultan at all events, but we must be able to show to 
Parliament that we have used all civility and forbearance, and 
that if hostilities ensue, they have not been brought on by any 
fault or mistake of ours. The presence of the squadrons at the 
outside of the Dardanelles, or in their neighbourhood, would 
probably be quite sufficient to keep the Sebastopol squadron at 
anchor or in port ; and the Turks have besides some naval and 
military force at and about Constantinople sufficient to make a 
resistance till our squadrons could get up. We have steamers 
that could tow the line-of-battle ships. We have, I believe, six 
or seven liners; the French about the same number. The 
Russians, I believe, twelve or fourteen. 

What I wish you to impress upon the Turks is that this 
communication is confidential, to keep up their spirits and 
courage ; but that they must not swagger upon it, nor make it 
public till they hear it officially. From Brunnow's language, 
and I have also seen him since the Cabinet, I should infer the 
matter wiU be amicably settled. 

He makes Austria understand no less clearly and 
emphatically that England is going to stand by the 

F. O. : October 6, 1849. 

My dear Ponsonby, — I send you a despatch to be communi- 
cated to Schwarzenberg. We have endeavoured to make it as 
civil as possible, so as not to leave him any ground for saying 
that he cannot yield to threats. We make none ; and in my 
verbal communications with Brunnow and Colloredo I have 
said nothing about our squadron being ordered up to the Dar- 
danelles. But it is right that you should know and understand 
that the Government have come unanimously to the deter-, 
toination of taking this matter up in earnest, and of carrying 
it through. We have resolved to support Turkey, let who will 
to against her in this matter. It is painful to see the Austrian 

VOL. ii. I 



Government led on in its blindness, its folly, and its passionate 
violence into a course utterly at variance with the established 
policy of Austria. If there is one thing more than another 
which Austria ought to do, it is to support Turkey against 
Russia ; and here is Schwarzenberg, in his fondness for bullying 
the weak, co-operating with the Russian Government to humble 
Turkey, and to lay her at the feet of Russia. 

But you understand these questions so thoroughly that yon 
will no doubt have been able to lay before the Austrian Govern- 
ment and Camarilla the full extent of the mistake they are 
making. They are besides uniting England and France in 
joint action, which is not what Austrian Governments have 
hitherto been particularly anxious to do. I cannot believe that 
the two Governments will push this matter further. The 
rights of the case are clearly against them. Both Colloredo 
and Brunnow, though I beg they may not be quoted, acknow- 
ledge that the Sultan is not bound by treaty to do what is 
required of him. Metternich, I am told, says it is a great 

What could Austria hope to gain by a war with Turkey, 
supported, as she would be, by England and France ? Austria 
would lose her Italian provinces, to which she seems to attach 
such undue value, and she never would see them again. What 
she might gain to the eastward I know not ; but perhaps she 
might not end by extending herself in that direction. At all 
events, I cannot conceive that, in the present state of Germany, 
it would suit Austria to provoke a war with England and 
France ; and I do not think that such a war would be of any 
advantage even to Russia. Pray do what you can to persuade 
the Austrian Government to allow these Hungarians either to 
leave Turkey, if they are able to do so, or to remain in Turkey 
quietly. The leaders would of course pass on to other parts of 
Europe ; the bulk of the emigrants might be settled somewhere 
in the interior of Turkey, and would make a useful colony. 

There is a notion that Austria means to try to turn a penny 
by this transaction, and to call on the Turks to pay a large 
sum, which it suits the Austrian Government to say that these 
emigrants have carried away with them ; but this dodge will 
not do, so pray try to persuade them not to attempt it. 

The bold attitude of England and France soon pro- 
duced its legitimate effect. 


F. 0. : October 23, 1849. 

My dear Normanby, — I have a private letter to-day from 
Ponsonby, in which he says that the Austrian Government has 
distinctly declared that it does not mean to insist on the sur- 
render of the Hungarian refugees, and that the Russian Govern- 
ment has no objection to this decision of Austria. But he says 
that he cannot as yet officially announce this decision. We 
hear from Warsaw that the Russians are indignant at the 
execution of the Hungarians who had given themselves up to 
the Russians, and that this feeling will probably make it more 
easy for Russia to desist from a demand which was made chiefly 
in support of Austria. 

Brunnow's language has not altered. From the first he 
admitted that, although the treaty of Kainardgi gave Russia a 
right to demand the surrender, it equally gave Turkey a right 
to choose the other alternative. He asked me the other day, 
with what intention, and within what limits, our squadrons 
were to act? I said within the Mediterranean as at present 
ordered, and with the intention of giving comfort and support 
to the Sultan, who had been so vehemently threatened by their 
two men at Constantinople. That our sending one squadron 
op the Mediterranean was, for the Sultan, like holding a bottle 
of salts to the nose of a lady who had been frightened. 

He asked whether it would not have been better to have 
waited for the answer from Petersburg. I said that in that 
case we might perhaps have been too late to prevent accidents 
which might have happened before our fleets had arrived. But 
I said that as long as our squadrons were in that part of the 
Mediterranean they could threaten nobody. If England and 
France had sent large fleets into the Baltic, then, indeed, Russia 
might have said, This must be intended for me ; what does it 
mean? And I have desired Ponsonby to say that if our 
squadron had gone up the Adriatic, it might have been a threat 
against Austria. But our ships, where they are, threaten 
nohody, and only hold out to the Sultan assistance at hand in 
case of need. 

An indirect benefit accrued from the action of our 
Government in this matter. The unanimity of public 
feeling elicited in its support, as soon as it had declared 
its intention of supporting Turkey to the full extent of 
going to war, had a great and excellent effect in Europe, 



as showing that we were not quite so incapable oi 
being moved to manly action as some speeches in Par- 
liament and at peace congresses might have led people 
to suppose. 

A cavil was now raised that we had violated the 
terms of a treaty by the presence of our fleet at the 
Dardanelles. Lord Palmerston controverts this. 

F. O. : October 23, 1849. 

My dear Ponsonby, — We are quite aware that the treaty of 
the Dardanelles of July, 1841, forbids foreign ships of war 
from entering either the Dardanelles or Bosphorus while the 
Porte is at peace. But that treaty does not prevent succour 
from being ready at hand, to help the Sultan in case war should 
come suddenly upon him. And the two Imperial Governmente 
should remember that Stiirmer and Titoff declared to the Porte 
that if the Turkish Government allowed a single man of the 
refugees to escape, it would be considered by Austria and Russia 
as a declaration of war. 

Such a communication may not have been authorised, 
though, from the arrogant and insolent tone of the despatches 
from Schwarzenberg and Nesselrode, which were communicated 
to the Turkish Government, I am inclined to think it was; 
but, at all events, such a communication having been made, 
there was evidently no time to be lost by those Governments 
which meant to defend Turkey against the two Imperial and 
imperious bullies. 

Lord Palmerston, when he had undertaken the task; 
was not the man to leave it half-way to take care of 
itself. Even to please an ally he was not disposed to 
run the risk, however small, of having to begin all over 
again. He felt sure that he had won, bat would leave 
nothing to chance. 

F. O. : November 7, 1849. 
My dear Canning, — I may, I think, now congratulate you 
upon the peaceful termination of the question about the refu- 
gees. Brunnow has just been with me, and says very quaintly, 
that it has from the first lieen raised to undue proportions and 
that it ought to have Iwn treated as an * aflkire de police, el 
ncn pas corn me ur.e aflkire de politique.' 


The three demands, as we understand them, now are, 1st, 
the expulsion of the Poles from the Turkish territory ; 2nd, 
the removal of the converted Poles to Diarbekirj 3rd, an 
engagement that the Porte should apply to foreign Govern- 
ments, and specially to England and France, to consent that 
Russian subjects who may become naturalised or denizens in 
England or France should not thereby be exempted from being 
treated in Turkey according to their original nationality. The 
first condition is just what the Sultan proposed to do. The 
second seems as a temporary arrangement unobjectionable, it 
being always understood to be only temporary, and that these 
men are not to be kept for the rest of their lives at Diarbekir. 
To the third we shall probably not be found willing to consent : 
a foreigner acquires by naturalisation the character, and with 
it the rights, of a British subject ; he acquires these by law, 
and I. do not see how the English Government could undertake 
to withhold from any man the protection to which he has 
become legally entitled. Naturalisation would not give a Rus- 
sian subject British rights in Russia, but it would do so in 
every other country ; but this is a question to talk about, and 
not to be fought about. I therefore look on peace as secure, 
and as soon as we get the next despatches from you we shall 
send orders to Parker to return to his usual station. The 
French are impatient to get their ships back, in case they should 
vant them against Morocco, where a petulant and self-sufficient 
consul of theirs has been trying to get up a quarrel with the 
Moors. I am glad their squadron has been out of reach ; this 
may give time to settle the dispute peaceably. Buchanan, who 
has just come from Petersburg, says that the Russians in general 
are much nettled at the check which their Emperor has received 
in his Turkish policy, and that they say he will take some 
opportunity to pay us off; and the way in which they anticipate 
that this will be done, is by fomenting insurrections in Bosnia 
and elsewhere among the Christian subjects of the Porte ; and 
even Brunnow cannot refrain from adverting to this, as a way 
in which Russia holds in her hands the good and evil destinies 
of the Turkish empire. The Turkish Government ought to be 
made well aware of this, and should lose no time in preparing 
measures to remove from the Christian subjects of the Porte 
ill just cause of discontent, and should thus place the Sultan's 
krone upon a broad and solid foundation. 

These late changes of Ministers in France will make no 
ther change in the foreign policy of the country except to ren- 


der it more conformable with the personal feelings and viewi 
of the President, and he is more disposed than some of his lat 
Ministers were (though we have no great fault to find wit! 
them) to follow a course of foreign policy calculated to creafc 
community of views and action between England and France. 

Broadlands : November 16, 1849. 

My dear Canning, — The French are in a monstrous hurr 
to get their fleet back from the neighbourhood of the Darda 
nelles. But yesterday I received from Normanby a proposa 
from the President that we should give you and Aupick du 
cretionary power to send away the squadron whenever and a 
soon as you should think their presence no longer necessarj 
and this was so reasonable a proposal that we at once close 
with it. 

Our own view is that it is desirable that our squadroi 
should return towards Malta whenever its presence near th 
Dardanelles is no longer wanted ; but that it should stay wher 
it is as long as its presence is of importance as a moral suppor 
for the Sultan. Whenever the Porte and the two Imperia 
Courts have come to an agreement upon the main points, th 
squadron might well come away ; but it would not do for us t 
bring it away while any material point was unsettled, and tha 
we should thus have the appearance of leaving the Sultan h 
the lurch. 

Moreover, it would not do that the Russian agents at Con 
stantinople should have a pretence for saying that Russia ha< 
ordered our fleets off, and that as we had thus yielded to th 
demands of Russia, the Porte had better do so too, becaus 
experience in this instance would show her that though w 
might swagger at first, yet when it came to the point, we wer 
sure to knock under, and that thus Turkey would always fun 
us ready to urge her on to resistance, but backing out ourselve 
when Russia began to hold high language to us and to show u 
a bold front. 

They would represent us as a barking cur that runs off wit] 
its tail between its legs when faced and threatened. We shouL 
thus lose all we have gained and most of what we had before. 

You will, of course, not fail to bear all this in mind ii 
using the discretionary authority now sent to you ; and thoug] 
we shall be glad to find the presence of the fleet no longe 
necessary, it is better that it should stay there a week or a fort 
night too long than that it should come away too soon. 


If you should think the continuance of our fleet for a further 
time important and essential, and Aupick should, under his 
instructions, declare himself of opinion that the fleets are no 
longer necessary, and if he should make a great difficulty in 
coming round to your opinion, there would be no great harm 
done if you were to split the difference, and if the French fleet 
—which has been specially ordered to keep separate from ours 
—was to work its way towards Toulon, while ours remained a 
little while longer, cruising or anchoring in the Archipelago. 

Broadlands : November 14, 1849. 

My dear Normanby, — It would have been quite ridiculous 
and mean to have ordered back our ships at the bidding of 
Russia, and merely upon her assertion of what she had sent as 
an answer to the Porte. Great countries ought not to act with 
such precipitate levity, and should put some degree of method 
and deliberation in their conduct. We sent our fleet up to the 
Dardanelles to be ready to support the Sultan in case of attack, 
and in order that his knowledge that our fleet was there for 
that purpose might give him courage to hold his own in his 
negotiations with Russia. That negotiation had not yet reached 
Constantinople when our last accounts came away ; it would 
turn upon demands some of which the Porte might object to ; 
the bullying system might again be resorted to, if our ships 
came away before everything was settled, and their departure 
during the negotiation would be represented by the Russian 
agents at Constantinople as an abandonment of Turkey in defer- 
ence to the remonstrances of Russia. We ought either never 
to have sent our fleet, or to keep it there till matters are settled. 
The French, however, are of course at liberty to do what they 
like with their own ; but they ought to have pointed out to 
them that the hasty retreat of their squadron will be represented 
by the Russians at Constantinople as a concession by France to 

Of course, as you say, disappointed ambition will try to turn 
popular feeling against an English alliance which thwarts per- 
sonal projects; but we must deal with this as best we can. 
There is always some difficulty or other to be striven against in 
public matters, 'For the current of politics doth seldom run 

With reference to our alleged infraction of treaty 
stipulations, Lord Palmerston writes : — 


Broadlands : November 22, 1849. 
My dear Canning, — Do not let Parker again anchor or 
enter within the outer castles of the Dardanelles ; his doing so 
has a very bad effect; it is difficult to argue that it is not 
entering the Straits of the Dardanelles, and that therefore it ia 
not a violation of the Treaty of July, 1841. 1 Nesselrode seems 
to have taken the matter quietly, and no wonder ; for such a 
nibbling at our Dardanelles Treaty is just what the Russians 
would like to see us establish as a precedent, and they would 
not be slow to follow our example. The port regulation of the 
Turkish Government by which the anchorage within the outer 
castles is allotted for ships-of-war of all nations to wait in till 
they know whether they can be permitted to go up to Constan- 
tinople, can fairly and logically be applied only to such ships- 
of-war as may by permission go up to Constantinople; but 
those are only light vessels for the use of the embassies and 
missions, and that port regulation cannot be deemed to apply 
to a squadron of line-of-battle ships, which cannot, according to 
treaty, go up to Constantinople while the Porte is at peace : at 
all events, it is close shaving and nice steerage, and exposes us 
to a disagreeable discussion about words, and puts us to prove 
that being within the Straits is not entering the Straits ; and 
that is not an easy demonstration to make good. If Parker is 
blown away from Besika Bay, let him go to Enos, or Jaros, or 
anywhere else where he may find shelter, never mind how far 
off; for wherever he goes he can always be back in time, and 
any attack of the Turkish territory by a Russian fleet or army 
is at present quite out of the question. We shall send you on 
in a few days our decision about the demands of the two Empe- 
rors. I should guess, from Brunnow's language to me to-day, 
that the Russian Government would be content to have the i 
renegade Poles eloignes from the frontier, and made to reside — 
but not as prisoners — in Asia Minor ; and Brunnow affected to 
treat very lightly the Austrian demand, representing that as a 
matter the Porte could easily dispose of if she had settled satis- 
factorily with Russia. 

1 ^ The words of the treaty were : 'All ships-of-war of all nation* 
coming to the Dardanelles are to stop and wait at the anchorage 
between the outer and inner castles till they know from Constantinople 
whether a firman will or will not be granted to allow them to proceed 
further on/ 


When the two Powers were baffled in their demand 
for the surrender of the fugitive Poles and Hungarians, 
Austria substituted a request that Turkey should keep 
them in confinement, and not allow them to emigrate 
to any other country. The Sultan indeed had originally 
proposed something of the sort when their extradition 
was summarily demanded, although he had never 
offered to keep his captives at the good pleasure of a 
foreign Government, but only for a time, and at his 
own discretion. In the following letter Lord Palmer- 
ston protests against the Austrian demand. 

F. O. : November 27, 1849. 
My dear Ponsonby, — I have only time to write two lines 
before the post goes. You say you do not understand what the 
objections are which Canning alludes to as liable to be urged 
against the demand now made by Austria upon Turkey about 
the refugees. Those objections are, that it is unreasonable and 
incompatible with the dignity and independence of the Sultan 
that he should be made the gaoler of the Emperor of Austria, to 
take charge of persons whom the Austrian Government may 
consider politically dangerous ; and that the performance of his 
duties as such gaoler should be subject to the superintend- 
ence of the agents of a foreign Power, and should continue 
until that foreign Power should consent to the cessation of 
bis gaoler's duties. The Treaty of Bucharest does not give 
Austria a right to exact this servitude from the Sultan, and the 
duties of good neighbourhood do not require it at his hands. 
Tbat which the Sultan is bound to do, is to prevent his terri- 
tory from being made a place of shelter from whence machina- 
tions should be carried on to disturb the internal tranquil lity of 
neighbouring States ; but this obligation would be fully per- 
formed if the Sultan sends out of his dominions those subjects 
of foreign Powers who may justly be suspected of having in- 
tention so to abuse his hospitality. All, therefore, that Austria 
can require on the score of good neighbourhood — and this is 
more than by treaty she can demand — is that the Hungarian 
refugees should be sent out of Turkey ; but to require that they 
should be detained and kept under restraint in Turkey is an» 
unreasonable demand, and one which if Turkey were to com- 
ply with, it would do more harm to Austria in public opinion 
in Europe than could be counterbalanced by any conceivable 


advantage to be derived from it. As to publications which these 
Hungarians might make in France or England, there are Hon* 
garians enough come away to publish everything that can be 
said or revealed ; and as to the sympathy which Kossuth would 
excite here or in France, they may depend upon it that he will 
be a much greater object of interest while unjustly detained in 
Turkey than if he was living at a lodging in Paris or London. 
It is bad policy in the Austrian Government, as well as in- 
justice. Pray endeavour to persuade them of this, and to pre- 
vail upon them to be content with the expulsion of these 

I write you this, and desire you to do your best, though I 
hear from many quarters that you oppose instead of furthering 
the policy of your Government, and that you openly declare that 
you disapprove of our course. No diplomatist ought to hold 
such language as long as he holds his appointment. It is idle 
trash to say that we are hostile to Austria because we may dia- j 
approve of the policy of a Metternich or the cruelties of the 
Manning Administration which now governs Austria; you 
might as well say that a man is the enemy of his friend because 
he tells that friend of errors and faults which are sinking him in 
the esteem of men whoso good opinion is worth having. 

And three days after to the same : — 

F. O. : November 30, 1849. 
The requirement of Austria about the Hungarian refugees 
is preposterous, and quite inconsistent with a due regard to the 
dignity and independence of the Sultan. It is as incompatible 
with the dignity of an independent Sovereign to make himself 
the gaoler for the State offenders of his neighbours as it would 
be for him to make himself purveyor for the executioner of that 
neighbour. Schwarzenberg, in his note of reply to Musurus, in 
pretending to quote what Musurus had said, put words into 
Musurus's mouth which Musurus did not use, and which mate- 
rially alter the sense of the offered engagement. Musurus did 
not use the word * Dorenavant ; ' and he said nothing about the 
arrangement lasting as long as the Austrian Government might 
choose. But what a childish, silly fear this is of Kossuth. What 
great harm could he do to Austria while in France or England t 
He would be tho hero of half-a-dozen dinners in England, at 
which would be made speeches not more violent than those 
which have been made on platforms here within the last four 
months, and he would soon sink into comparative obscurity; 


hile, on the other hand, so long as he is a State detenu in 
urkey he is a martyr and the object of never-ceasing interest. 
lS to any exposure which he might be able to make of the mis- 
eeds of the Austrian Government, generals, and troops, there 
le others enough coming to England to lay bare to the public 
£ Europe everything of that kind, and the detention of Kos- 
nth would only infuse greater bitterness into the feelings with 
rhich such disclosures will be made. The Austrian Govern- 
neat, therefore, would do well, for its own sake and with a view 
so its own interest, to consent to the expulsion of the Hun- 
garians from Turkey. But whether it consents or not, you may 
rely upon it that get away they will, by hook or by crook, and 
the Austrian Government will then cut a silly figure by being 

The contents of the following letter illustrate the 
imperious and sensitive character of the Emperor 
Nicholas, which, later on, came out so forcibly and 
painfully during the Crimean War. The audience, how- 
ever, was given to the English ambassador a few days 
later ; but it is probable that when Prince Menschikoff 
was sent to Constantinople in 1853, his Imperial master 
had not forgotten the mortification of 1849. 

Broadlands : November 27, 1849. 
My dear Bloomfield, — I have received your letter of the 
8th, in which you say that the Emperor has not given you 
the usual audience on your return to your post, and that 
you have been privately informed that he means to see you 
only on public occasions. I am sorry for this, because 
I regret that these late Turkish affairs should have pro- 
duced such an effect upon the Emperor's conduct towards the 
British representative at his Court, but still I scarcely think 
that it would be useful that the Queen should retaliate upon 
Bronnow. But, indeed, the habits of our Court scarcely leave 
room for retaliation. The Queen sees the foreign Ministers 
afc levees, at concerts, and at balls, when all, or nearly all, are 
generally present, and about once a year she has the representa- 
tives of the principal Courts to dinner ; but that would be later 
m the year, and by that time the Emperor may have altered his 
conduct towards you. We must make great allowances for the 
effect which a great political check must have produced upon 
tie Emperor's mind; and his annoyance at so public a thwart- 


ing is probably increased by the circumstance that it has bees 
in some degree brought upon him by the injudicious zeal of 
Titow and Radzivil, who probably went beyond their instruc- 
tions, and committed the Emperor further than he intended. 

The mortification also is the greater because it has followed 
so quickly upon his great successes in Hungary, and has entirely 
dimmed the lustre of those successes ; and, moreover, it must be 
galling to the lord and master of so many hundred thousand 
men and of near fifty sail of the line to be baffled by a squadron 
of seven sail of the line and by the time of the year. Our best 
course is not to take much notice of his ill-humour, and to try to 
bring him right again. 

But though the Emperor will probably long remember what 
has happened, and will be long ready to take advantage of any 
opportunity to pay us off, yet when the Constantinople business 
is settled he will probably resume his usual cordiality, at all 
events in outward manner ; and it may be some good long time 
before he may find an opportunity of giving us any serious em- 

Nearly two years elapsed, however, before the 
Turkish Government could muster up courage to fly in 
the face of its powerful neighbour and liberate Kossuth 
with his companions. During this interval they were 
kept in honourable captivity at Kutayah. Much interest 
was taken in their fate, both in the United States and 
in England. Lord Palmerston writes to urge their 

C. G. : February 10, 1861. 

My dear Canning, — I have written you a despatch about 
Kossuth and his fellow exiles. I have made it as gentle as yrea 
possible ; but pray let Rescind and Aali know privately that it 
is but a faint expression of the public feeling in this country on 
that subject. 

You will have seen how the matter was noticed in the House 
of Commons in the debate on the Address ; and I have repre- 
sentations coming in from large towns and small — from Eng- 
land, Scotland, and Wales. 

There was last year great enthusiasm throughout the whole 
country in favour of the Sultan, because people here believed 
that the Turkish Government was animated by a generous and 
manly determination not to be the executioner or the gaoler of 


her of the Emperors ; and it was that belief which led the 
untry, from one end of it to the other — Whigs, Tories, 
eulicals — to applaud and back up the defiance which, by our 
Ivice and our squadron, we flung in the teeth of the two 
nperial Governments. But the ground on which we took our 
and is fast sinking under our feet, and the bright hopes which 
16 nation entertained are rapidly fading away. The Sultan 
as certainly rescued the Poles and Hungarians from the rope 
nd the bullet ; but he is making himself the degraded slave of 
Lostria to consign the Hungarians to the lingering but not less 
ertain doom of the prison. 

I am ashamed of our proteges, the Sultan and his white- 
Lvered Ministers ; and you may tell the Ministers, confidentially 
rat confidently, that if they go on in this way, not only not a 
quadronbut not a cockboat would we, or could we, send in any 
suae to their assistance, and the enthusiasm of last year is rapidly 
ranting into contemptuous disgust at their servile consent 
» perform the most degrading office of turnkey for Prince 

In September the men were freed. Shortly after- 
wards a deputation from Islington that went to the 
Foreign Office, to congratulate Lord Palmerston on the 
event, caused some stir, owing to the language of the 
address and the tone of Lord Palmerston's reply. 
Among other things, he said that to gain the day 
'much generalship and judgment had been required, 
and that during the struggle a good deal of judicious 
bottle-holding was obliged to be brought into play.' 
This simile, borrowed from the prize-ring, tickled the 
fcncy of the public, and for many a day after, Lord 
Palmerston, drawn with a sprig in his mouth, figured 
in the pages of f Punch' as the ' judicious bottle- 




Just as some unsightly knoll or insignificant stream has 
won imperishable fame by the accident of its crest or 
banks being the scene of a great battle, so did the name 
of a paltry adventurer become famous, in 1850, by its „ 
connection with a memorable debate. The fate of the 
Ministry as well as that of a Minister was involved, for 
the wrongs of Don Pacifico and the manner of their 
redress were only the battle-field on which a policy was ' 
attacked and bitter antagonisms fought out. The allied 
troops who led the attack were English Protectionist! 
and foreign Absolutists. Victorious in their first onset 
among the Lords, they met with signal defeat in the 
House of Commons, after one of the most remarkable 
displays of eloquence and feeling that the walls of Pai* 
liament have witnessed. 

Although the matters at issue were far wider than 
the narrow boundaries of Greece, it was, round that 
centre that the contest principally raged ; and it will be 
necessary, therefore, briefly to scan the ground-plan of 
the fight, and to recall the course of events which at 
last led the British Government to employ force. 

Of all the races of Europe, none is more interesting 
than the Greek. It is singular to observe how many of 
its ancient characteristics have remained immutable 
amongst the varying misfortunes with which two thou- 
sand years have afflicted it. The same enterprising, 
speculative, and brilliant intellect which causes us to 
linger over the records of those three hundred years 


Lot ennoble the history of the world is still alive, though 
mattered over the counting-houses and dispersed 
midst the professional celebrities of Europe. It can 
ardly be denied that, amongst the men engaged in 
olitical affairs in Greece itself, have appeared gentle- 
aen who, alike distinguished for their manners and 
heir ability, might take place amongst the accomplished 
itatesmen of their time. In the people are still found 
he virtues of industry and hospitality. But by a sin- 
jnlar^contrast, whilst the Greek nation might be es- 
ieemed and admired, the Greek Government never, 
luring its varying vicissitudes, obtained or merited 
iither esteem or admiration. The assassination of the 
Uustrious citizen who had dedicated his life to her 
lervice ; * the refusal to acknowledge as a debt the money 
rhich, in her most desperate need, was advanced to 
ttscue her from despair, commenced a series of events 
ihat tarnished the lustre of a revolution which an un- 
leniable right had sanctioned and an unquestioned 
leroism achieved. From the moment, in short, in 
nrhich the agony of her glorious struggle was passed, 
md she had it in her power to realise the generous 
beams of those whose hearts and hopes had accom- 
panied her throughput it, Greece, or at least, the rulers 
)f Greece, seemed bent on converting expectation into 

We have seen that, when the question of establish- 
ing Greek independence was being agitated, Lord 
Palmerston was amongst the first to feel the generous 
sentiments which animated the last days of Canning 
and Byron. Nor did his interest in the cause cease 
when it appeared triumphant. Although he did not 
accept the young Bavarian prince as a desirable candi- 
date, he still entertained hopes that, aided by the 
counsels of Europe, he would be able to establish a 
government sufficiently just and stable to permit the 
fortunes of the country to grow up gradually under it. 
It was, perhaps, as a compliment to his patronage that 

1 Capo d'Istria. 



it was determined that the newly-elected sovereign 
(aged 18) should land in his dominions from an English 
ship of war ; and the vessel selected was the * Bellero- 
phon,' commanded by Captain Lyons. The naval 
profession at that time did not seem likely to offer 
those chances of distinction which the heroic in Captain 
Lyons' character would have preferred to any other. It 
struck him, then, that to be British Minister at a Court 
which was certain to concentrate on itself mucji of the 
attention of Europe, would be a desirable pos#; and 
with this idea before his mind, it is easy to conceive 
how he insinuated into the mind of King Otho the 
idea that he was precisely the man who, in such a 
situation, would be most agreeable and useful to him. 
A request was made in his behalf, and complied with. 

By this transaction the King expected he had got a 
staunch supporter, and Captain Lyons a docile pupil. 
Both were soon disappointed, and very angry at being so. 

It is no use disguising the fact, Captain Lyons, 
though a very good officer, and a very clever as well as 
agreeable man, was not a very good diplomatist. 

The position was a false one, since each was likely 
to expect too much from the other. It was rendered 
more false by the character of the King being slow and 
cautious to a fault, and that of Captain Lyons being 
in the same degree hasty and impetuous. The King's 
natural counsellers were, moreover, Germans; aid 
German statesmen could not be expected to entertain 
the same views of government that were likely to be 
entertained by English statesmen. Add to this, that 
as all Greeks who had the slightest pretension to places, 
expected to have them, there was certain, whatever party 
was in power, to be a strong party in opposition. 

It has been the fashion of late years to consider, in 
the Foreign Office, that the country is made for the 
diplomacy, and not the diplomacy for the country ; and 
that a Minister's duty is to see that so many thousands 
a year are divided with as much impartial indifference 
as possible, between so many gentlemen, who are pre- 


Burned, by having passed certain examinations, to have 
acquired a claim on the fund. 

A Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs being once 
asked why he did not appoint a very able and ex- 
perienced diplomatist, then receiving a pension, to an 
important post that was then vacant, instead of another 
man much his inferior, replied, ' Tour man has had his 
innings ; it is another man's turn now ! ' It never 
struck the Minister that the question was not which 
man had been employed, but which was best for the 
public interest to employ. So an unthinking cry has 
been raised as to what is called 'a block in the service ; 5 
that is, as to pushing some men out of their places, and 
others into them, with a more rapid movement ; and a 
Committee of the House of Commons once recommended 
that no Minister or Ambassador should be left more than 
five years in his post. 

Yet anyone who has reflected on these subjects 
knows that the knowledge of most value in any pro- 
fession, but especially in diplomacy, is that which you 
acquire daily, hourly, without being sensible that you 
acquire it, by practice and experience. It is quite true 
that a very clever man is more useful with a year's 
experience than a very stupid one with twenty years 5 , 
for there are men so stupid that experience is thrown 
away on them. But take two men of equal ability, and 
the man who has been five years Minister or Ambassador 
at any place, is at least twenty times more fit for it than 
the man who has been wishing five years to be Minister 
or Ambassador at that place. It is not merely that 
one learns to do things better by habit in a particular 
calling — one learns what not to do. 

Let us exercise but a little common sense. Would 
any great banking or mercantile house lay down, as a 
rule, to be always shifting its agents, and remove an 
agent who had been doing his business well at a par- 
ticular place, to put another man, who perhaps had 
never seen the place, in his stead ? 

The folly of such a system is too apparent to need 
vol. n. K 


proof; but if it were wanted, Captain Lyons was % 
capital instance of it. Captain Lyons was an active, 
able, ambitious, astute man ; a man of the world, too: 
but lie wanted experience in the business he had been 
plunged into, and consequently he was often firing off 
very big guns at very small affairs. Nevertheless, that 
his language and conduct in the main, as the represen- 
tative of a State which had bestowed its countenance, 
given its assistance, and lent its money to Greece* woe 
no more violent in their reprobation than circumstances 
fully justified, may be amply proved by the following 
exposition of the Finance Minister at Athens in 184& 

Gentlemen, — Some days ago yon sent for me to give yew 
some account of the state of our finances ; and I excused myself 
on the plea of having just taken office. I now come down to 
this House to tell you that the finance department is in a com- 
plete state of disorganisation and paralysis : that no accounts 
exist either as to the revenue or the expenditure* and that if* 
will be utterly impossible to furnish you with anything in ih& 
shape of a correct budget. In consequence of the dishonesty 
and incapacity of the public functionaries, the public account^ 
are in a state of chaos. All that M. Provilegio and others havo 
told you respecting every honest man having been dismissed, 
and of the spoliation of the public money at Syra and else- 
where, is perfectly true. Millions are due to the State ; and- 
we do not know our debtors, as the revenue books have disap- 
peared. This is the financial statement I have to make. 1 

This was surely enough to account for all that could- 
be thought of or said to the Government of Greece by 
the British Minister. But a diplomatist is frequently 
perched on the horns of a double dilemma. He strives 
by the courtesy and amiability of his personal relations 
to soften the character of official communications ; and 
it is said of him, * You will never do anything with that* 
man: he is too polite: they don't believe him in. 
earnest ; ' or, on the other hand, he seeks, by a some- 
what stern and severe manner, to give additional weight 
to the observations he is charged to make use of; and 

1 Animal Register, 1846, p. 303. 


then thfe good-natured critic of the Foreign Office 
shrugs tip his shoulders, and says, ' That fellow renders 
himself so cursedly disagreeable; who would do any- 
thing to oblige him, if he could help it ? ' However, 
the great crisis in Greek affairs took place not under 
the warlike regime of the naval captain, but under the 
mild one of the library philosopher. 1 

When England, France, and fiussia had brought 

Turkey to acknowledge the independence of Greece, the 

three Powers settled that the form of Government for 

the new kingdom should be a Monarchy ; but England 

attached to her assent as an indispensable condition that 

it should be a Constitutional Monarchy. Consequently, 

when Prince Otho of Bavaria, then a minor, was called 

to the throne, the three Powers, on announcing the 

choice they had made, declared at the same time that 

constitutional institutions would be given by Otho as 

soon as he came of age. This declaration was ratified 

by the King of Bavaria, in the name and on behalf of 

Ins son, the young King of Greece. 

This promise was not kept. The despotic Courts of 
Bussia, Prussia, and Austria, naturally averse to consti- 
tutions, gladly availed themselves of the plea that the 
Greek was not yet ripe for representative government, 
in order to avoid pressing on Otho the fulfilment of his 
pledges. France kept aloof on the same ground, Guizot 
philosophising the while with his favourite simile, that 
if a six hundred horse-power engine is placed in a small 
8kiff, it must tear it to pieces instead of moving it for- 
ward. England, therefore, stood alone in her remon- 
strances, and naturally incurred the dislike of those 
whom she considered that it was her invidious duty to 
reproach. In other matters, also, she was on the un- 
popular, while France, for her own objects, took the 
popular, side. Monsieur Guizot, in his Memoirs, 2 tries * 
to distinguish in the following words between their 
respective attitudes : — 

1 Sir Thomas Wyse, who succeeded Lord Lyons. 

2 Vol. xii. p. 324. 

K 2 



Tandis qu'a Londres on acceptait l'independance de la Grece 
comme une malencontreuse n6cessit£, nous n'acceptions a Paris 
que comme une necessity facheuse les 6troites limites dans 
lesquelles on resserrait cette ind£pendance. 

But then he points the moral of his reflections by a 
very significant remark : — 

Mais en repoussant toute tentative d f extension contre la 
Turquie, nous n'entendimes point interdire aux Grefs les 
grandes esperances. 

Thus, while England saw well enough the difficulties 
which the Greeks would find in self-government, and 
considered the important matter was to urge them to 
learn the habits and practice of a Constitutional Mon- 
archy, France, in order to retain a special influence, was 
secretly fostering hopes of future conquests and idealised 

On England, therefore, fell the burden of remon- 
strance against the evils of a constitution without fre& 
government, the fruit of which was licence without 
liberty. In the words of Lord Palmerston, the whol^ 
system grew to be full of every kind of abuse. Justice 
could not be expected where the judges were at the mercy 
of the advisers of the Crown. The finances could noi> 
be in any order where there was no public responsibility 
on the part of those who were to collect or to spend the 
revenue. Every sort of abuse was practised, from bri- 
gandage in the country to ' compulsory appropriation ' 
in the capital itself, and the tyranny of the police was 
almost unbearable. To recall such a state of things is 
to provide some excuse for the English Minister at 
Athens, for the fact that a chronic ill-feeling existed 
between the two Governments, and prepared the way for 
an explosion. That explosion, as usually happens i# 
such cases, was lighted at last by a very small match. 

There were in every town of Greece a number of 
persons whom England was bound to protect — Maltese* 
Ionians, and others. It became the practice of this 
Greek police to make no distinction between them and 


their own fellow-subjects. Compensation was from time 
to time demanded for many acts of violence to Ionians, 
tut all in vain, till at length an outrage on the boat's 
crew of Her Majesty's ship Fantome, and the cases of 
Mr. Finlay and Don Pacifico, exhausted Lord Palmer- 
ston's patience, and determined him to insist on an 
immediate compliance with his just demands. Mr. 
Finlay was a Scotchman, whose land was taken to round 
off the palace gardens at Athens, and no payment could 
be wrung from the appropriators. Unlike Frederick 
the Great, who pointed with pride to the mill in his 
grounds at Sans Souci as a proof that in his empire the 
rights of every subject, however humble, were respected, 
Otho could only show a heap of diplomatic notes and 
private petitions seeking justice, as a proof that in his 
kingdom it could nowhere be found. 

M. Pacifico was a Jew, a native of Gibraltar, whose 
house was pillaged and gutted, in open day, by a mob 
headed by the sons of the Minister of War. While it 
was occurring no attempt was made by the authorities 
of Athens to protect him. During three years Sir E. 
Lyons and Mr. Wyse had pressed his claims for com- 
pensation without success. That some of his demands 
were extortionate there can be little doubt ; but there 
can be even less doubt that he had been most grossly 
injured, and had a right to redress. 

It was not without giving notice that Lord Palmer- 
ston determined to act. As long before as August 1847, 
he had written to Lord Bloomfield, our ambassador at 
Petersburg : — 

No orders have as yet been sent to Parker to compel the 
Greek Government to comply with our various demands ; but 
yon should not conceal from Nesselrode and the Emperor that 
such orders must soon be sent, if Coletti does not render them 
unnecessary by voluntary compliance. There is not the slight- 
est danger that Joinville should give Parker the trouble of 
giving him a passage to Portsmouth, because we are too palpably 
in the right to make it possible for France to oppose us by force 
of arms ; and we are stronger than she is in the Mediterranean, 


and therefore there is the best possible security for her good 
behaviour. Tell Nesselrode and the Emperor that if they 
think the enforcement of our demands would be injurious to 
the stability of Greece, an opinion which we in no degree 
share, the only way of preventing it is to persuade Coletti to 
do what we require, as the Greeks have ample means to pay us 
if they choose. 

Monsieur Coletti, 'chef de Pallicares/ the crafty 
physician of Ali Pacha, and erewhile the adventurous 
chief of half-savage insurgents in Epirus, having been 
for eight years Greek Minister at Paris, had returned 
to Athens after the constitutional revolution in 1843, 
and was now Prime Minister. He was a fit subject for 
a pen such as Monsieur About's. His character is thus 
traced by Lord Palmerston: l — 

I have no doubt that Coletti would, as "Wallenstein says, 
prefer France to the gallows, but I do not see why he should be 
reduced to that alternative. To be sure, St. Aulaire said to me 
the other day that Coletti was a necessary Minister, for that he 
is the chief and leader of all the robbers and scamps of Greece, 
and that if he was turned out of office, he would put himself at 
their head, and either make incursions into Turkey or ravage 
the provinces of Greece. To this I replied that it seemed an 
odd qualification for a Minister that a man was a robber by 
profession, but that I did not share St. Aulaire's apprehension 
of what might happen if Coletti was turned out, because if in 
that case he invaded Turkey he would probably be shot, and if 
he plundered Greece he would no doubt be hanged. But he 
will not be turned out ; Otho loves him as a second self, because 
he is as despotic as Otho himself ; and as long as a majority 
can be had for Coletti in the Chambers, by corruption and 
intimidation, by the personal influence of the King, and by 
money from France, Coletti will remain Minister. With this 
we cannot meddle ; all we can insist upon is justice for our 
subjects and payment of the interest on that part of the debt 
which we have guaranteed. If we cannot get these things, we 
must have recourse to compulsion. If we do get them, we 
cannot interfere further; and I daresay Coletti will be wise 
enough to satisfy our demands, and not to drive us to extreme 

1 To Lord Nonnanby, F. 0., April 20, 1847. 


As to Lyons, there has been a standing conspiracy against 

Mm for several years past among all his diplomatic colleagues, 

headed by the Greek Government. Lyons has been looked 

upon as the only advocate of constitutional government. Otho 

and Coletti wish it at the devil. Piscatory detests it, because 

the French Government think they can exercise more influence 

over Ministers and Courts than over popular assemblies ; the 

Bavarian Minister has, like his King, been hitherto all for 

despotism; Prokesch, obeying Metternich, goes into convul- 

sioiiB at the very notion of popular institutions ; the Prussian 

Minister has been told implicitly to follow the Austrian ; and 

the Russian only dares support the- Constitutional party when 

there is a chance of Otho being frightened away and of his 

making room for the Grand Duke of Oldenburg. All these 

gentlemen, therefore, combined to suppress all information as 

to the disorders and abuses going on in Greece, and united to 

run down Lyons. 

Lord Palmerston at last notified formally to the 
English Minister at Athens that the end of British for- 
bearance had arrived. 

F. O. : December 3, 1849. 
My dear Wyse, — I have desired the Admiralty to instruct 
Sir William Parker to take Athens on his way back from the 
Dardanelles, and to support you in bringing at last to a satis- 
factory ending the settlement of our various claims upon the 
Greek Government. You will of course, in conjunction with 
Him, persevere in the suaviter in modo as long as is consistent 
with our dignity and honour, and I measure that time by days 
—perhaps by some very small number of hours. If, however, 
the Greek Government does not strike, Parker must do so. In 
that case you should embark on board his fleet before he begins 
to take any hostile steps, in order that you and your mission 
may be secure against insult. He should, of course, begin by 
reprisals ; that is, by taking possession of some Greek property ; 
hot the King would probably not much care for our taking 
hold of any merchant property, and the best thing, therefore, 
*tmld be to seize hold of his little fleet, if that can be done 
handily. The next thing would be a blockade of any or all of 
his ports; and if that does not do, then you and Parker must 
teke such other steps as may be requisite, whatever those steps 
uifty be* I remember that at one time it was thought that a 


landing of marines and sailors at some town might enable us to 
seize and carry off public treasure of sufficient amount. Of 
course, Pacifico's claim must be fully satisfied. 

You should intimate to the Greek Government that although 
we do not this time come to levy the amount due to us on 
account of the Greek loan, yet we abstain from doing so in 
order to give them an opportunity of doing the right thing of 
their own accord ; but that we cannot go on requiring the 
people of this country to pay fifty thousand a year to enable 
King Otho to corrupt his Parliament, bribe his electors, build 
palaces, and lay up a stock purse for evil times, which his bad 
policy may bring upon him. 

The fleet arrived at Athens, but the demands made 
npon the Greek Government were not complied with. 
The French and Eussian Ministers were furious at our 
prompt action, and did their best to spirit up the King 
of Greece to resistance. 

F. O. : February 1, 1860. 
My dear Normanby, — An agricultural speech of Granby 
enables me to leave the House and add a few lines to what I 
have already written to you about Greek affairs. I think you 
may put to Lahitte what a contrast there is between the con- 
duct of English agents towards France and that of French 
agents towards England. The French representative in Mo- 
rocco, partly out of his own head, and partly by instructions 
from home, made demands on the Morocco Government, some 
of which were unusual and some exaggerated, and which the 
Moorish Government was most unwilling to accede to. Our 
Consul-General, Mr. Hay, first spontaneously, and then by 
instructions from me, bestirred himself with as much zeal and 
activity as if the case had been one in which his own Govern- 
ment had been concerned, and by an infinity of trouble per- 
suaded the Morocco Government to comply with the French 
demands, and thus saved France from the necessity of employ- 
ing force to obtain redress. In Greece we have demands for 
redress which have been pending for years, and the neglect and 
refusal of which we have borne with most exemplary patience, 
and when at last we find it necessary either to abandon or en- 
force them, and not being able consistently with our duty to 
give them up, we send our fleet to support the demands of our 
diplomatic agent, we find the French Minister, faithful to the 


rarae which French diplomacy has for years past pursued in 
Greece, encouraging the Greek Government to refuse, and thus 
loing all he can to drive us to the necessity of employing force 
a obtain redress. I must say that we have good ground for 
uomplaining of the ungrateful return which we receive for our 
good offices in aid of France. 

As to the melodrama which you talk of, it seems to me to 
have been quite the right course. Our squadron arrived, and 
Parker would not have been justified in assuming beforehand 
that the demands, which Wyse was to repeat, would be refused. 
Parker, therefore, on his arrival saluted as usual, and with his 
officers paid his respects to the King before Wyse repeated his 
demands. This was in good taste and well judged, because it 
took off from his arrival the public appearance of a menace, 
and left the Greek Government at liberty to yield without the 
appearance of constraint. 

I should have blamed Parker if he had come in with a 
swaggering air of threatening preparation, with his tompions 
out and his men at their quarters, so as to have made it impos- 
sible for Otho not to appear to be passing under the Caudine 
Forks. But French diplomacy has ever been bitterly hostile 
to as in Greece ; and as the French Government has chosen to 
retain there its former diplomatic agent, the same spirit of 
petty jealousy and national enmity prevails in the French 
mission at Athens which we have had to lament and to cope 
with during the whole reign of Louis Philippe. 

What is it the French object to as to our proceedings I We 
have demanded redress for wrongs committed towards our 
subjects; our demands have been long treated with neglect, 
silence, or refusals. We send at last our squadron to enforce 
them. Does not France act in a similar way in similar cases, 
only with far more violence and less justice ? Witness her 
exploits at Tahiti and Sandwich Islands, where she, on false 
pretences, bullied the Queen of the first into a surrender of her 
independence and plundered the King of the other because he 
would not alter his tariffs on brandy and compel his Custom- 
house officers to learn French. 

But we have all along been thwarted in Greece by the , 
intrigues and cabals of French agents, who have encouraged 
the Greek Government to ill-use our subjects and to refuse us 
satisfaction, and of course Thouvenel is frantic that we have at 
last lost patience. 

On the refusal of the Greek Government to accede 



to our demands, the British admiral proceeded, accord- 
ing to his instructions, to lay an embargo upon certain 
vessels at the Piraeus. Lord Palmerston thus communi- 
cates these proceedings to Drouyn de Lhuys, French 
Minister in London : — 

C. G. : February 8, 1860. 

Mon cher Ambassadeur, — Voici un extrait d'une depechede 
l'amiral Parker au Chevalier Baring, en date du 22 Janvier. 

The Greek vessels herein referred to (as having been de- 
tained) include, I believe, all that the Greek Government hare 
in commission. The whole are of little value, and in the pre* 
sent temper of the Greek Government, supported, as it seems, 
by the counsels of the French Minister and of the Prussian 
charge d'affaires, the mild measures hitherto adopted, I fear, are 
not likely to produce the desired compliance with our demands* 

Je suis peine de voir que Taction de la mission francaise a 
Athenes continue a nous etre si hostile, mais du moins ceuz qui 
nous forcent a des mesures de severite ne doivent pas nous en 
faire un sujet de reproches. 

Mille amities, 


Je viens d'apprendre que M. de Thouvenel a appele l'escadre 
francaise a Athenes ; nous souhaitons rester bons amis, mais 
cela pourrait devenir serieux. 

Monsieur Thouvenel had called upon the French 
fleet to come to Athens. The admiral had, however, 
sufficient discretion to wait for further instructions 
from home. Lord Palmerston writes to Lord Nor- 
manby : — 

F. 0. : February 14, 1860. I 
I have had despatches and letters from Wyse up to January * 
30. Thouvenel was continuing to pursue his system of reckless 
hostility, and doing all the fnischief he could by stimulating 
Fersiani to join him in improper notes to "Wyse, and in en- 
couraging Otho to refuse compliance with our demands, 
Thouvenel had written to the French admiral to come to 
Athens, of course to oppose our proceedings ; but the admiral 
having more sense than the diplomatist, declined to do so with- 
out orders from home. 

Some of the notes written by Thouvenel, and, at his sag- 


stion, by Persiani, are really laughably absurd and ridiculously 
ipertinent. As an instance of the latter, he expresses his 
tonishment that Parker should have presumed to detain a 
reek steamer before the eyes of the commander of a French 
xrvette, which was actually lying in the Piraeus at the time ; 
nd, as an example of the former, he protests against our get- 
ing compensation for wrongs done to British subjects, because 
« says the Greek Government is bound to apply the first pro- 
boe of its revenues to the interest and sinking fund of the 
pnranteed debt, an engagement which the Greek Government 
as never fulfilled, which we should be glad if France would 
oin us in compelling King Otho to fulfil, and which, if fulfilled, 
ircmld still leave ample funds out of which our demands could 
» satisfied. This protest is really a burlesque. In the mean- 
while the Greeks were beginning to understand the rights of 
he case, and when they saw us detaining the Otho, they said 
re were taking away the wrong one. 

Parker had been obliged to begin reprisals on merchant 
hips, and he expected to have in that way sufficient value to 
over our claims. 

The surprise of Lahitte l that we were going on with repri- 
frk is like the exclamation of the Neapolitans about the 
Lnstrian troops, ' Ma ce canone ! ' or the reply of the aide-de- 
amp sent out, when our troops first landed in Portugal, to see 
fiat the outpost firing was, who came back and said, * Why, 
hey are actually firing ball cartridge.' I think it not unlikely 
hai Otho (for it all depends on him) may have given way 
wfore the French negotiation begins, but we cannot suspend 
not operations more than such time as may be reasonable to 
flkrw the French negotiator a fair opportunity to persuade 
Dtho to give in. 

Our case is good; our right indisputable; Greece is an 
independent State and responsible for the acts and misdeeds of 
kar Government, and redress must be had. If the French are 
treasonable and angry, I am sorry for it ; but justice to our 
ttn subjects is a paramount consideration. 

The French Government, finding we were in earnest, 
■ad that we were not to be intimidated by any action 
rf the Powers at Athens, began to fear lest the matter 
ihould be settled without their having any share in it. 

1 Gen. Lahitte, French Minister for Foreign Affairs. 


They had, accordingly, offered their good offices. Loid 
Palmerston had accepted their offer, but only on tht 
understanding that there was to be no discussion of 
the principle of our demands, and even on the amount 
only as to some of them. 

Baron Gros was ordered to Athens by the Frencfc 
Cabinet as mediator. The blockade and reprisals wei* 
to be suspended during the continuance of his effort 
to accommodate matters. Lord Palmerston writes to 
his brother : — 

F. 0. : February 16, 1850. 

We accept the good offices of France in regard to Greece in 
the same way in which we did so in the case of Naples in 184ft 
to obtain for us satisfaction, but not to arbitrate about 
claims. King Otho is the enfant gdte de Vabsolutwme, 
therefore all the arbitrary Courts are in convulsions at what 
have been doing ; but it is our long forbearance, and not 
precipitation, that deserves remark. The papers to be 
before Parliament will be ready in a day or two, and will show 
this. What has happened may serve as a hint to other Govern* 
ments who turn a deaf ear to our remarks, and think to w«f 
us out by refusals or evasions. 

I conclude that by this time Parker will have got together 
Greek vessels enough belonging to the Government and to pri- 
vate individuals to be a sufficient security for payment of whrt 
is claimed. And, of course, we shall not let this security oufc 
of our hands till the money we claim is actually paid to tbft 
persons for whom it is demanded. 

Political matters are looking well here. Our majorities ift 
the two Houses have been decisive, and the measures we haft 
brought in and announced seem to give satisfaction. There wffl" 
be no change of Government this year, nor probably the next 
Peel finds it impossible to discover a party who will accept hi* 
as leader to form a Government ; and Stanley, though he has* 
party as Opposition leader, is judged by them as by his owl. 
son, who says, ' My father is a very clever man, but he has nfr 
judgment, and would not do for a Minister of this country/ 

And the same day to Mr. Wyse at Athens : — 

Nothing could be better than the manner in which yofl 
and Sir William Parker have conducted the affair to which yotfli 


mmnnications relate. You have both of you combined 
•mness, decision, and promptitude with all the moderation, 
abearance, and courtesy compatible with the execution of your 
istructions. My despatches give you full instructions for the 
iture. Baron Gros is, I believe, as good a choice as the French 
ould have made, but he is a Frenchman, and of course an 
Hhoist. I have purposely fixed no time for the duration of 
lie suspension of reprisals, but you will put him on his honour 
so tell you when he has failed, if fail he should. Perhaps, 
wwever, he may succeed. All depends on his instructions- 
We accept good offices to procure a settlement of our demands, 
ind not arbitration as to the amount of them. In fact, the 
mly one which could admit of discussion in regard to its 
imount is that of Pacifico ; but if his documents are right, as 
[ believe them to be, his claim is as clear as the rest. We must 
lave money, tocccmte sonante, and not promises to pay. Those 
ffomises would infallibly be broken, and we should have to 
jegin all over again. The word of the Greek Government is 
is good as its bond, and the bondholders can tell us what that 
8 worth. Besides, after the systematic violation of the article 
jf the Treaty of 1832, as to applying the first proceeds of the 
•evenue to the payment of the interest and sinking fund of the 
iebt, no confidence can be placed, even in a treaty engagement, 
f such should be offered to us. The plea of poverty cannot 
3e listened to at a moment when fresh expenses, diplomatic and 
mlitary, are without any necessity incurred. 

Monsieur Thouvenel, however, did not cease from 
bis active though secret opposition to the action of the 
British Government. Such an old diplomatist as Lord 
Normanby should hardly have required such a hint as 
Hie following : — 

F. 0. : February 22, 1850. 
My dear Normanby, — One word more about Thouvenel and 
I have done with him. In your private letters and public 
despatches you argue that Thouvenel cannot have done certain 
things because you are told by the French Ministers that he 
has not reported having done so; or because you have had 
shown to you despatches in which he makes no mention of having 
done such things ; or because you have seen or have heard of 
private letters written by him to his friends implying that he 
has pursued a different line of conduct. All I can say in reply 
is, that against these negative inferences I place the positive 


assertions of our Minister and Admiral and the „&e and snfct 
stance of ThouvenePs own notes, which latter are quite innf 
concdlable with the statements in his private letters. But ywj 
are surely too good a diplomatist not to be aware that there an 
such things as private letters and public despatches writtei 
expressly that they may be shown, and you must, moreover, \$ \ 
aware that the mere fact that a foreign agent is said by Ut. 
employer not to have mentioned that he did a particular tiling 
is no proof that he did not do it. Nesselrode stoutly assert^ 
that Titow had never told the Turkish Government that tity 
escape of any of the refugees would be tantamount to a declara- 
tion of war against Russia and Austria, but we are moraflt 
certain that such a declaration was made both by Titow am 
Stunner. Thouvenel may be a very gentlemanlike man in 
private society, but that does not prevent his being a reckleA 
intriguer in a political crisis, and there is nothing in the politiflt 
habits of French diplomatists, especially of those of the QvM 
school, that can render it improbable that he should be so. -* 

A fortnight later, the same accounts arrive : — E 

F. 0. : March 12, 1850. . * 
I am somewhat afraid that when Gros gets to Athens, hi ' 
will find France so engaged in support of the Greek Govern* - 
ment that he will scarcely be able to disentangle himself from 
the meshes spread for him by Thouvenel ; but if he does notdf - 
so, his mission will be a failure. We have got, I imagine,-' 
vessels enough to make good our demands, and we shall cer*^ ' 
tainly not let one of them go till we, or those on whose behdf 
we make our demands, have been paid in hard cash the amount 
of their just claims. 

The Bussian Government was not less hostile than 
France, although more decorous in its hostility, ft 
had expressed its disapproval in a strongly-wordei 
despatch. Lord Palmerston writes to the EngttriL 
Minister at St. Petersburg: — 

C. G. : March 27, 1860. 
We do not mind the Russian swagger and attempt to bullf 
about Greece. We shall pursue our own course steadily anil 
firmly, and we must and shall obtain the satisfaction we* 
require. The amount of money which we demand is really 99 
small that the bottleholders of Greece ought to be ashamed of 


» rout il jy make about it. But it is not the money that 
ikes the essential part of the case in their eyes ; they are 
rious at seeing that the spoilt child of Absolutism, whom they 
we been encouraging on for many years past to insult and 
jfy England, should at last have received a punishment from 
loch they are unable to protect him. It is not the number of 
ripes that he has received which they care about, but the fact 
tut we have laid our stick over his back and that they have 
ot been able to prevent it. As to Nesselrode's mysterious 
ints of evil consequences which may follow if we continue to 
btain the Greek merchant ships, he may be assured that we 
hall detain them till we get paid, or rather till the persons for 
ihom we make our demands shall have been paid, barring the 
fortuguese claims of Pacifico, which are matters for investiga- 
ion, and may probably admit of considerable abatement. But 
he number of merchantmen detained has been much exagge- 
mted, and does not, I believe, exceed forty, or, at the utmost, 

The Russian ambassador having written to com- 

Elain of the language of the ' Globe 5 and ' Morning 
tost' about the Emperor's acts and policy, Lord 
Rdmerston's answer is as follows : — 

F. O. : May 16, 1850. 
My dear John Russell, — I return you Brunnow's letter. 
Any articles in the newspapers to which he alludes were drawn 

rthe Russian Government by the unprecedented publica- 
of Nesselrode's despatch of the 17th March, and by the 
fcoastful threats made by the 'Times' newspaper as to what 
Itnssia would do to put a stop to our proceedings in Greece. 
This war of words is, no doubt, much to be deprecated, but the 
responsibility for any evils which it may produce must rest 
with those by whom it is begun. With regard to the Russian 
despatch, the feeling in this country has been but one, and that 
toe universal; and I happen to know that a leading man 
tmong our opponents in Parliament said lately that he must 
withhold his approval of our conduct with regard to Greece 
until he knew whether we had answered it in a manner befit- 
ting the dignity of England. 

Baron Gros was very dilatory, and by his conduct 
gave colour to the suspicion that he meant to fail in 
his good offices, trusting that the English Govern- 




ment would not venture to renew the embargo, 
that thus the whole matter would be transferred 
consideration to London or Paris. It was gall 
wormwood to the French and Bussians that the 
tiations should be going on at Athens, with the 
the British fleet on the spot ready to support 
Minister, and to coerce if all proposals were refused. 

F. O. : May 7, 18ft 4 
My dear Wyse, — Gros had, up to the date of your 
received despatches, been perpetually trying to slide out d 
character of organ of good offices, and to place himself in 
position of arbiter. He was sent, under our acceptance d 
good offices of France, to endeavour to prevail upon the 
Government to agree to our demands, and his whole 
and exertions seem to have been directed to prevail upon 
to give up, or greatly to modify, those demands. In short* I 
lias acted as the avowed advocate of Greece ; and I 
admire the coolness with which, when asked by you wl 
if you agreed to his required abatements, he could answer 
the consent of the Greek Government, he replied that he 
do no such thing. His game was first to beat you down as! 
as he could, and then to come back and to say that he 
not bring the Greek Government up to that point, and 
you must therefore come down lower still, or else he most 
away. When Drouyn l has held this sort of language, and i 
that Gros would be obliged to renounce his task, I have ahnw 
said, ' Well, what of it 1 so much the worse for the GreeW 
that's all.' Drouyn, however, has behaved very well all akDfr] 

As to the claims of foreigners, Prussians or others, 
account of the detention of their cargoes in Greek vessels, 
answer would be, that a man who chooses to put his property] 
on board a vessel belonging to another country must take 
chance as to any difficulties into which that country may gsb] 
with other Powers, and all the remedy which he can jflsuj 
have is to get his cargo back again on proof that it 
belongs to him. Last year, during the Danish hostilift*! 
against Germany, many of our merchants had cargoes on board] 
German ships. Those ships were captured by the Danes, anil 
the only remedy our merchants had was to prove ownership' 
before the Prize Court at Copenhagen, and thus to get their 
goods delivered up to them. 

1 French ambassador in London. 


While the convention with the French Government 
-which was to form the basis of their exercise of good 
ffices — was being settled in London, matters were 
advancing at Athens. Baron Gros, after long and 
iedious negotiations, threw np his office as mediator, 
ind thereupon Mr. Wyse renewed the embargo and 
seized anew several vessels. This at length brought 
the Greeks to terms, and they finally agreed to send a 
letter of apology for the affair of the Fantdme, to pay 
a sum of 180,000 drachmas for Finlay and Pacifico, and 
not to aid or put forward any claims for compensation 
for the ships that had been detained, which were, in 
return, to be immediately released. This was a great 
triumph for Lord Palmerston. His resolution and calm 
persistency had attained the desired end, in spite of 
difficulties and opposition which might well have daunted 
a smaller man. But his troubles were not yet over. 
The French were beyond measure annoyed that the 
dispute should at last have been settled by our own 
means and not by their good offices. They tried to 
fix a quarrel upon England on the ground of breach 
of faith, in recurring to the employment of force with- 
out waiting for the result of their intervention. As 
Baron Gros had notified both to Mr. Wyse and to the 
Greek Government, two days before the renewal of 
hostilities, that his mission was at an end, this was an 
entirely baseless charge. M. Drouyn de Lhuys, how- 
ever, was recalled from London ; and General Lahitte, 
the French Foreign Minister, read a despatch in the 
Chambers in which he openly charged the British 
Government with duplicity. Anxious questions were 
put in both Houses of Parliament, and many thought 
we were on the verge of war. 

Lord Palmerston knew better, and writes to Lord 
Normanby : — 

F. O.: May 17, 1850. 
It is clear that the French Government think a quarrel 
with ns would be useful to them at home. In my answer in 
the House yesterday I purposely abstained from stating that 


Drouyn wag ordered back to Paris as a mark of dissatisfaction 
because it would have been very improper in me to proclaim 
difference which I hoped might be adjusted. Of course, Lahitt 
was at liberty, if he thought fit, to announce the terms of hi 
own instructions to his own ambassador. It was not for me U 
do so unless I had intended to widen the breach. 

0. G. : May 19, 1860. 

Drouyn came to me on Tuesday, and I spent four and s 
half hours in going through the papers with him, and in 
explaining our course. On Wednesday he came back to me, 
' and began by reading to me Lahitte's despatch. Nevertheless, 
we went on for a couple of hours going through some of the 
papers which we had not gone through sufficiently the day 
before. As he was leaving me he said he should start that 
evening, as the next day his Government would lay papers 
before the Assembly, and it was important that he should be 
able to communicate with his Government before the Chamber 
met. I said I thought he was quite right, and I begged him 
to give the substance of the explanations I had given him. 

I further assured him that we never had intended any dis- 
respect to the French Government, and did not think that we 
could be justly charged with having broken any engagement; 
and I said that, considering the many great and important 
interests, not merely English and French, but also European, 
which require that a good understanding should be maintained 
and a close connection kept up between England and France, I 
did earnestly hope that his Government would not set up a 
guereUe d'Allemand between the two countries ; but that the 
decision rested with them, as there were certain things which 
we could not do, and which they ought not to ask us to do. 
We parted with many friendly personal assurances mutually 
exchanged ; though I by no means pretend to assert that on 
the points at issue I succeeded in satisfying him. 

The best and shortest account of the matter of Drouyn'* 
recall was given by the Duke of Wellington, at a party given 
at Lord Anglesey's, on Thursday evening, to celebrate his? 
Lord Anglesey's, birthday. When the Duke came in, several 
people flocked round him and asked him what he thought of 
the matter. His reply was, / Oh, oh, it's all right ; it's aD 
nonsense ! ' I see clearly that there was a combined and con- 
joint operation, and that it was preconcerted somewhere, and 
by some of our good friends and allies, that Drouyn should 
receive his order to return on the Queen's birthday, and thai 


Brunnow and Cetto should send excuses and not attend my 
dinner on that day. All this was what the Americans would 
»y * cruel small/ and savours much of the strategy of the 
'Tambour Major' of Paris, as I am told our old friend the 
Princess l is called. The Duke of Devonshire, when he heard, 
at his party on Wednesday evening, that Brunnow and Cetto 
bad excused themselves from the dinner, said it was a proof 
how far democratic principles and feelings had spread, for that 
in former times no diplomatists would have been guilty of so 
great an impropriety. I have seen neither of them since. 

The bolt has missed its aim, however, and people here 
pretty plainly understand the whole affair. I suppose that by 
this time the Parisians also begin to see through the millstone. 
However, those who meant to punish me have in one respect 
gained their object, for I cannot, in the present state of things, 
g3 down to Broadlands for the four days of Whitsuntide. 

Lord Palmerston had now to exercise his diplomatic 
ingenuity in order to smooth over French susceptibility. 
He sought, therefore, some means of putting France 
forward as a successful mediator, and he managed it 
thus. There were some further claims of Pacifico's 
which were based upon the loss of papers which were 
Ms vouchers for certain demands upon the Portuguese 
Government. In the agreement with Mr. Wyse it had 
been arranged that a joint inquiry of the two Govern- 
ments should ascertain whether they were well founded 
or not, and that meanwhile a deposit should be paid by 
the Greek Government. Lord Palmerston wished to 
propose to France, that, instead of a joint inquiry by 
the two Governments concerned, there should be arbiters 
and an umpire, to be named by the joint concurrence 
of the British, French, and Greek plenipotentiaries. 
There was besides, as we have seen above, an engage- 
naent entered into with Mr. Wyse that the Greek 
Government should not put forward or support any 
claims for compensation for the detention of ships. 
Lord Palmerston suggested that there should be sub- 
stituted for this engagement the good offices of France, 

1 Princess Lieven, whose husband had been Russian ambassador in 

L 2 


who should advise the King of Greece neither to star 
nor to aid any such claims. The French Foreign Minis* 
ter was, however, in no humour to be appeased. 

C. G. : May 22, 1860. 

My dear John Russell, — You will see that Lahitte, who, I 
take it, is pretty nearly the mere organ of Piscatory and Thiers, 
simply refuses our proposal, without giving reasons or proposing 
anything else. His view of the matter seems to be that ' the 
quarrel is a mighty pretty quarrel as it stands, and it would be 
a pity to spoil it by explanation.' 

But Normanby's conversation with the President brings 
another question under the consideration of the Cabinet. Louis 
Napoleon would be satisfied, as I infer, if to the arbitration we 
added the restitution of the deposit, and this the Cabinet will 
have to consider to-morrow. The reasons for and against seem 
to me to be much as follows. In favour of it, may be said that 
the Parliament and the public would be glad of a settlement of 
the dispute, and would not examine very minutely the con- 
ditions of the arrangement ; that they would not much like a 
prolonged estrangement between England and France, merely 
on account of the question as to the manner of settling the 
very doubtful claims of Pacifico in regard to his Portuguese 
documents, and they might not easily understand why we 
should face a quarrel with France rather than accept now a 
diplomatic security which we were willing to think sufficient on 
the 19th of last month. This would, probably, be the broad 
view of the matter taken by those who look only to the surface 
of things, and they are the majority here as well as elsewhere. 

On the other hand, it must be owned that if, in order to 
appease the anger of the French Government (I do not flay 
France, for I do not believe the French people care a stra* 
about the matter), we return to Otho the deposit which he was 
compelled to place in our hands, the relanding of that sspi 
from the British steamer in the Piraeus will be looked upon in 
Greece and in Europe generally as an act of submission by 
England to France, as a baisse de pavilion, and that it will very 
much affect our moral position among the nations of the world ; 
at least, this would be the tendency of the act as regards the 
impression to be produced upon those classes of men whom 3 
have mentioned, who do not look below the surface of thing** 
and who take only a broad view of affairs. France would be it" 
some degree acting the part of the constable who comes up an«- 


bids Griffin restore twenty pounds which he had compelled 
Pigskull to lend him against his will. 

Lord Palmerston was, however, equal to the occasion. 
He suggested that this objection would be obviated if 
the restitution of the deposit was accompanied by an 
engagement to adhere to their promises on the part of 
the Greek Government in the form of a convention to 
be signed in the presence of the French plenipotentiaries, 
who would thus indirectly act as guarantors of the 
undertaking. This ingenious device to save English 
honour while soothing Trench susceptibilities is a fair 
sample of one branch of the 'art of diplomacy/ It 
proved ultimately successful, but the next letter to St. 
Petersburg shows that there were meanwhile various 
agencies at work trying hard to keep the two nations 

apart: — 

F. O. : May 24, 1850. ' 
My dear Bloomfield, — I have been so busy fighting my 
battle with France that I have been obliged to put off for a 
time taking up again my skirmish with Russia, but I have 
written a short answer to Nesselrode's last long despatch about 
Greek affairs and a reply to Brunnow's protest, and you shall 
have them both by the next opportunity. I think we shall be 
able to come to an understanding with France, unless the 
French Government want to pick a quarrel with us, and if that 
is their intention, of course they can carry it into effect. This 
storm got up at Paris has had, however, a double object, first 
to knock me over, next to sever the connection between England 
and France. The Orleanist clique and Madame Lieven aimed 
at the first result ; the Russian party, led and aided by Madame 
lieven, calculated upon the second. There have been in 
Iondon within the last week letters from Madame Lieven to 
Mends of hers here, abusing me like a pickpocket, and full 
of indignation and disappointment that we did not send for 
Normanby the moment the French Government sent for 
Drouyn. She was unable to suppress her mortification that 
&eyhad not succeeded in producing a decided rupture between 
&e two countries. Of course, she and Kisseleff 1 hunt in 
couples, and we well know that KisselefFs language at Paris 

1 Russian ambassador in Paris. 


and Brunnow's at London are both of them adapted to the 
purposes of the Russian Government at each place. 

All the accounts which come from Greece state that the 
Greeks complain, not of what we have done, but of what we 
have not done ; they say the English brought Otho, the English 
ought to have taken him away. 

The French were delaying coming to a settlement 
knowing that the Opposition were stirring in Eng- 
land, and hoping to get some aid from the debates in 
Parliament. On June 17, Lord Stanley moved in the 
House of Lords the following resolution : — 

That while the House fully recognises the right and duty 
of the Government to secure to Her Majesty's subjects residing 
in foreign States the full protection of the laws of those States, 
it regrets to find, by the correspondence recently laid upon the 
table by Her Majesty's command, that various claims against 
the Greek Government, doubtful in point of justice or 
exaggerated in amount, have been enforced by coercive 
measures directed against the commerce and people of Greece, 
and calculated to endanger the continuance of our friendly 
relations with other Powers. 

Lord Stanley's fervid attack upon the conduct of 
the Foreign Secretary was supported with much 
energy by Lord Aberdeen and Lord Brougham. His 
motion was carried by a majority of thirty-seven; 
and Lord Palmerston wrote next morning to Paris as 
follows : — 

F. 0. : June 18, 1860. 

We were beaten last night in the Lords by a larger majority 
than we had up to the last moment expected, but when we 
took office we knew that our opponents had a larger pack in 
the Lords than we had, and that whenever the two packs were 
to be fully dealt out, theirs would show a larger number than 

When the Protectionists have thought that a defeat on any 
particular question in the Lords would make us resign, such as 
would have been the case with regard to the Navigation Laws; 
for instance, last year, they have carefully abstained from 
mustering their whole strength. Last night they felt confident 
that we should not go out on account of an adverse vote of the 


House of Lords, and they brought up all their men, even the 
hospital invalids. 

What the Commons may do remains to be seen, but I 
greatly doubt the Protection party there venturing to propose 
resolutions similar to those of the Lords. If they do, I think 
we know pretty well what the result would be. 

Not only was no adverse motion made in the House 
of Commons, but, on June 24, Mr. Boebuck moved, 
as a reply to the vote of the Lords, the following resolu- 
tion: — 

That the principles on which the foreign policy of Her 
Majesty's Government have been regulated have been such as 
were calculated to maintain the honour and dignity of this 
country, and in times of unexampled difficulty to preserve peace 
between England and the various nations of the world. 

A debate of four nights' duration followed. On 
the second night Lord Palmerston rose, and in a speech 
of four hours long, which was a masterpiece of argu- 
ment and of detailed reasoning, vindicated his whole 

He began by expressing his opinion that those by 
whose act the question had been brought under the 
discussion of Parliament had not conducted themselves 
with a sufficient sense of the gravity and importance of 
the issues involved. 

For if that party in this country imagine that they are 
strong enough to carry the Government by storm, and to take 
possession of the citadel of office, or if, without intending to 
measure their strength with that of their opponents, they con- 
ceive that there are matters of such gravity connected with the 
conduct of the Government, that it becomes their duty to call 
upon Parliament solemnly to record its disapprobation of what 
has passed, I think that either in the one case or in the other 
that party ought not to have been contented with obtaining the 
expression of the opinion of the House of Lords, but they ought 
to have sent down their resolution for the consent and con- 
currence of this House ; or, at least, those who act with them 
hi political co-operation here should themselves have proposed 



to this House to come to a similar resolution. But, be the road 
what it may, we have come to the same end ; and the House is 
substantially considering whether they will adopt the resolution 
of the House of Lords or the resolution which has been sub- 
mitted to them by my hon. friend the member for Sheffield. 

Now, the resolution of the House of Lords involves the 
future as well as the past. It lays down for the future a 
principle of national policy which I consider totally incom- 
patible with the interests, with the rights, with the honour, 
and with the dignity of the country, and at variance with the 
practice, not only of this, but of all other civilised countries in 
the world. The country is told that British subjects in foreign 
lands are entitled to nothing but the protection of the laws and 
the tribunals of the land in which they happen to reside. The 
country is told that British subjects abroad must not look to 
their own country for protection, but must trust to that in- 
different justice which they may happen to receive at the hands 
of the Government and tribunals of the country in which they 
may be. 

Now I deny that proposition, and I say it is a doctrine on 
which no British Minister ever yet has acted, and on which the 
people of England never will suffer any British Minister to act. 
Do I mean to say that British subjects abroad are to be above 
the law, or are to be taken out of the scope of the laws of the 
land in which they live ? I mean no such thing. I contend 
for no such principle. Undoubtedly, in the first instance, 
British subjects are bound to have recourse for redress to the 
means which the law of the land affords them when that law is 

available for such purpose It is only on a denial of 

justice or upon decisions manifestly unjust that the British 
Government should be called upon to interfere. But there may 
be cases in which no confidence can be placed in the tribunals, 
those tribunals being, from their composition and nature, not of 
a character to inspire any hope of obtaining justice from them. 

I will take a transaction that occurred not long ago, as an 
instance of a case in which, I say, the people of England would 
not permit a British subject to be simply amenable to the laws 
of the foreign country in which he happened to be. I am not 
going to talk of the power of sending a man arbitrarily to 
Siberia; nor of a country, the Constitution of which vests 
despotic power in the hands of the Sovereign. I will take a 
case which happened in Sicily, where, not long ago, a decree 
was passed that any man who was found with concealed arms 


in his possession should be brought before a court-martial, and, 
if found guilty, should be shot. Now, this happened. An 
innkeeper of Catania was brought before a court-martial, accused 
under this law by some police officers, who stated that they had 
discovered in an open bin, in an open stable in his inn-yard, a 
knife, which they denounced as a concealed weapon. Witnesses 
baring been examined, the counsel for the prosecution stated 
that he gave up the case, as it was evident there was no proof 
that the knife belonged to the man, or that he was aware it was 
in the place where it was found. The counsel for the defendant 
aaid, that such being the opinion of the counsel for the prosecu- 
tion, it was unnecessary for him to go into the defence, and he 
left his client in the hands of the court. The court, however, 
nevertheless pronounced the man guilty of the charge brought 
against him, and the next morning the man was shot. 

Now, what would the English people have said if this had 
been done to a British subject? and yet everything done was 
the result of a law, and the man was found guilty of an offence 
by a tribunal of the country. 

I say, then, that our doctrine is that, in the first instance, 
ledress should be sought from the law courts of the country ; 
but that in cases where redress cannot be so had — and those 
cases are many — to confine a British subject to that remedy 
only would be to deprive him of the protection which he is 
entitled to receive. 

He then proceeded with a short sketch of English 
relations with the Greek kingdom and of the deplorable 
state of law, justice, and police in that country, and 
continued : — 

We shall be told, perhaps, as we have already been told, that 

if the people of the country are liable to have heavy stones 

placed upon their breasts and police-officers to dance upon 

them; if they are liable to have their heads tied to their 

inees, and to be left for hours in that state ; or to be swung 

tike a pendulum, and to be bastinadoed as they swing, foreigners 

tiave no right to be better treated than the natives, and have no 

business to complain if the same things are practised upon them. 

Ve may be told this, but that is not my opinion, nor do I be- 

We it is the opinion of any reasonable man. Then, I say, that 

in considering the cases of the Ionians, for whom we demanded 

Reparation, the House must look at and consider what was the 

state of things in this respect in Greece ; they must consider the 


practices that were going on, and the necessity of patting a stop- 
to the extension of these abuses to British and Ionian subjects 
by demanding compensation, scarcely indeed more than nominal 
in some cases, but the granting of which would be an aoknown 
lodgment that such things should not be done towards us in 

In discussing these cases, I am concerned to have to say 
that they appear to me to have been dealt with elsewhere in a 
spirit and in a tone which I think was neither befitting the 
persons concerning whom, nor the persons by whom, nor $* 
persons before whom, the discussion took place. It is often 
more convenient to treat matters with ridicule than with grave 
argument, and we have had serious things treated jocosely, and 
grave men kept in a roar of laughter for an hour together at the 
poverty of one sufferer, or at the miserable habitation of another, 
at the nationality of one injured man, or the religion of another, 
as if because a man was poor he might be bastinadoed and 
tortured with impunity, as if a man who was born in Scotland 
might be robbed without redress, or because a man is of the 
Jewish persuasion he is fair game for any outrage. It is a 
true saying, and has often been repeated, that a very moderate 
share of human wisdom is sufficient for the guidance of human 
affairs. But there is another truth, equally indisputable, which 
is, that a man who aspires to govern mankind ought to bring to 
the task generous sentiments, compassionate sympathies, and 
noble and elevated thoughts. 

After relating the story of Finlay and Pacifico in 
some detail, he proceeded : — 

M. Pacifico having, from year to year, been treated either 
with answers wholly unsatisfactory, or with a positive refusal, 
or with pertinacious silence, it came at last to tnis, either that 
his demand was to be abandoned altogether, or that, in pursu- 
ance of the notice we had given the Greek Government a year 
or two before, we were to proceed to use our own means of 
enforcing the claim. ' Oh ! but/ it is said, ' what an ungenerous 
proceeding to employ so large a force against so small a Power 1' 
Does the smallness of a country justify the magnitude of its evil 
acts 1 Is it to be held that if your subjects suffer violence, opt* 
rage, plunder in a country which is small and weak, you are to 
tell them when they apply for redress that the country is sp 
weak and so small that we cannot ask it for compensation f 
Their answer would be that the weakness and smallness of the 


rantry make it so much the more easy to obtain redress. ' No/ 
i is said, ' generosity is to be the rule. We are to be generous 

those who have been ungenerous to you ; and we cannot give 
k» redress because we have such ample and easy means of pro- 


But, it was urged, Pacifico is such a notorious 

I say with those who have before had occasion to advert to 
the subject that I do not care what M. Pacifico's character is. 

1 do not, and cannot admit, that because a man may have acted 
i&iffi on some other occasion, and in some other matter, he is to 
be -wronged with impunity by others. 

The rights of a man depend on the merits of the particular 
case ; and it is an abuse of argument to say that you are not to 
give redress to a man because in some former transaction he 
tty Lave done something which is questionable. Punish him 
if you wSl, punish him if he is guilty, but do not pursue him as 
a pariah through life. 

He then entered on a long and lucid history of the 
vinous transactions already recounted, justifying both 
lis action towards the Greek and his negotiation with 
the French Government. 

Having thus disposed of the matter of Greece, he 
turned to the affairs of Portugal and Spain, about which 
kehad been attacked by Sir James Graham, then mem- 
ber for Eipon. He pointed out that ' his little experi- 
mental Belgium monarchy,' as it had been sneeringly 
ttlled, had been constituted by British intervention not 
^similar in kind from that employed in the former 
1 countries: that it had proved a secure and beneficial 
(Ration; and that he hoped for Portugal the same 
pwperity and happiness. He then went on : — 

Portugal is now in the enjoyment of a Constitution, and 
putically it is working as well as under ail circumstances, and 
*oadering how recently it has been established, could perhaps 
to been expected. ' Oh, but/ said the right hon. Baronet, 
yon have Costa Cabral as Minister, and your object was to get 
ndof lam/ Now, the fault I find with those who are so fond 
tf attacking me either here or elsewhere, in thid country or in 



others, is, that they try to bring down every question to a per- 
sonal bearing. If they want to oppose the policy of England, 
they say, ' Let us get rid of the man who happens to be the 
organ of that policy. 1 Why, it is like shooting a policeman. 
(Laughter, and cries of ' Hear, hear/) As long as England ii 
England, as long as the English people are animated by the 
feelings, and spirit, and opinions which they possess, you may 
knock down twenty foreign Ministers one after another, but d* 
pend upon it no one will keep his place who does not act upon 
the same principles. When it falls to my duty, in pursuance of 
my functions, to oppose the policy of any Government, the 
immediate cry is, ' Oh, it's all spite against this man, or thai 
man, Count this, or Prince that, that makes you do this ! ' 

After reciting the events in Spain which induced the 
British Government to interfere under the Quadruple 
Treaty, he added : — 

If England has any interest more than another with refer- 
ence to Spain, it is that Spain should be independent, thai 
Spain should be Spanish. Spain for the Spaniards is the maxim 
upon which we proceed in our policy with regard to Spain. 
Much evil must ever come to this country from the fact of 
Spain being under the direction of other Powers. It is emi- 
nently for our interest that when we have the misfortune to 1* 
in dispute or at war with any other Power, we should not* 
merely on that account, and without any offence to or from 
Spain herself, be at war with Spain also. We considered tha* 
the independence of Spain was more likely to be secured by * 
Government controlled by a representative and national A* 
sembly than by a Government purely arbitrary, and consistuf : 
merely of the members who might form the Administrate*. 
Therefore, on grounds of strict policy, independently of W 
general sympathy which animated the people as well as tl* 3 
Government of this country towards Spain at that time, ttf 
thought it our interest to take part with Isabella, and agaidt 
the pretensions of Don Carlos. That policy was successful ; <1* 
Carlist cause failed ; the cause of the Constitution prevailed - 


Very dexterous was the next part of his speech, VBu 
which, while apparently talking of France and Guizot^ 
he drew an unmistakable picture of England and hffl 


foreign Minister. The House caught the portrayal at 
Mice, and showed their appreciation by loud applause. 

However, sir, the right hon. Baronet (Sir J. Graham) says 
that these affairs of Spain were of long duration, and produced 
disastrous consequences, because they were followed by events 
of the greatest importance as regards another country, namely, 
fiance. He says that out of those Spanish quarrels and Spanish 
marriages there arose differences between England and France 
Vhich led to no slighter catastrophe than the overthrow of the 
Reach Monarchy. This is another instance of the fondness for 
aarrowing down a great and national question to the small ness 
cf personal difference. It was my dislike to M. Guizot, for- 
aooth, arising out of these Spanish marriages, which overthrew 
bis administration, and with it the throne of France ! Why, 
ar, what will the French nation say when they hear this 1 They 
are a high-minded and high-spirited nation, full of a sense of 
their own dignity and honour — what will they say when they 
bear it stated that it was in the power of a British Minister to 
overthrow their Government and their monarchy? (Much 
Aeering.) Why, sir, it is a calumny on the French nation to 
Appose that the personal hatred of any foreigner to their 
Minister could have this effect. They are a brave, a generous, 
tod a noble-minded people; and if they had thought that a 
foreign conspiracy had been formed against one of their ministers 
—{tremendous and prolonged cheering, which prevented the 
loble Viscount from concluding the sentence) — I say, that if 
.Ike French people had thought that a knot of foreign conspira- 
tors were caballing against one of their Ministers, and caballing 
hr no other reason than that he had upheld, as he conceived, 
the dignity and interests of his own country, and if they had 
thought that such a knot of foreign conspirators had coadjutors 
in their own land, why, I say that the French people, that 
have, noble, and spirited nation, would have scorned the in- 
trigues of such a cabal, and would have clung the closer to, and 
have supported the more, the man against whom such a plot 
had been made. If, then, the French people had thought that 
I, or any other foreign Minister, was seeking to overthrow M. 
Guizot, their knowledge of such a design, so far from assisting 
the purpose, would have rendered him stronger than ever in the 
post which he occupied. No, sir, the French Minister and the 
French Monarchy were overthrown by far different causes. 
And many a man, both in this country and elsewhere, would 


have done well to have read a better lesson from the eventi 
which then took place. 

Leaving, to use his own words, the sunny plains of 
Castille and the gay vineyards of France, lie next betook 
himself to the mountains of Switzerland, and entered on 
an elaborate justification of the charges brought against 
him in connection with the civil war between the 
cantons. After that, in his own language again, travel* 
ling from the rugged Alps into the smiling plains of 
Lombardy, he pleaded his cause as follows : — 

With regard to our policy with respect to Italy, I utterly 
deny the charges that have been brought against us of having 
been the advocates, supporters, and encouragers of revolution. 
It has always been the fate of advocates of temperate reform 
and of constitutional improvement to be run at as the fomented 
of revolution. It is the easiest mode of putting them down ; 
it is the received formula. It is the established practice of 
those who are the advocates of arbitrary government to say, 
' Never mind real revolutionists ; we know how to deal witk 
them ; your dangerous man is the moderate reformer ; he is suck 
a plausible man ; the only way of getting rid of him is to set 
the world at him by calling him a revolutionist. 

Now, there are revolutionists of two kinds in this world* 
In the first place, there are those violent, hot-headed, and un- 
thinking men who fly to arms, who overthrow established 
Governments, and who recklessly, without regard to conse- 
quences, and without measuring difficulties and comparing 
strength, deluge their country with blood, and draw down the 
greatest calamities on their fellow-countrymen. These are tfca i 
revolutionists of one class. But there are revolutionists of 

improvement until the irresistible pressure 
accumulated discontent breaks down the opposing barriers, an! ) 
overthrows and levels to the earth those very institutions which ■ 
a timely application of renovating means would have rendered 
strong and lasting. Such revolutionists as these are the men 
who call us revolutionists. It was not to make revolutions 
that Lord Minto went to Italy, or that we, at the request of the 
Governments of Austria and Naples, offered our mediation be- 
tween contending parties. 


He then dealt successively with Lord Minto's mis- 
sion to Italy, with the events in Sicily, and with the 
support given to Turkey in the matter of the Hungarian 
refugees, and ended as follows : — 

I believe I have now gone through all the heads of the 
charges which have been brought against me in this debate. 
I think I have shown that the foreign policy of the Govern- 
ment in aU the transactions with respect to which its conduct 
has been impugned has throughout been guided by those prin- 
ciples which, according to the resolution of the honourable and 
learned gentleman, ought to regulate the conduct of the 
Government of England in the management of our foreign 
i&urs. I believe that the principles 'on which we have acted are 
those which are held by the great mass of the people of this 
country. I am convinced these principles are calculated, so far 
U the influence of England may properly be exercised with 
aspect to the destinies of other countries, to conduce to the 
maintenance of peace, to the advancement of civilisation, to 
the welfare and happiness of mankind. 

I do not complain of the conduct of those who have made 
these matters the means of attack upon Her Majesty's Ministers. 
The Government of a great country like this is, undoubtedly, 
in object of fair and legitimate ambition to men of all shades of 
opinion. It is a noble thing to be allowed to guide the policy 
ind to influence the destiny of such a country ; and if ever it 
U8 an object of honourable ambition, more than ever must it 
he. so at the moment at which I am speaking. For while we 
have seen, as stated by the right hon. Baronet, the political 
tttthquake rocking Europe from side to side — while we have 
lean thrones shaken, shattered, levelled, institutions overthrown 
tod destroyed — while in almost every country of Europe the 
tmfiict of civil war has deluged the land with blood, from the 
Atlantic to the Black Sea, from the Baltic to the Mediterranean, 
tUs country has presented a spectacle honourable to the people 
Of England, and worthy of the admiration of mankind. 

We have shown that liberty is compatible with order; that 
individual freedom is reconcilable with obedience to the law. 
We have shown the example of a nation in which every class 
of society accepts with cheerfulness the lot which Providence 
has assigned to it, while at the same time every individual of 
each class is constantly striving to raise himself in the social 
scale — not by injustice and wrong, not by violence and illegality, 


but by persevering good conduct, and by the steady and ener- 

fetic exertion of the moral and intellectual faculties with which 
is Creator has endowed him. To govern such a people as this 
is indeed an object worthy of the ambition of the noblest man 
who lives in the land, and, therefore, I find no fault with those 
who may think any opportunity a fair one for endeavouring to 
place themselves in so distinguished and honourable a position; 
but I contend that we have not in our foreign policy done any- 
thing to forfeit the confidence of the country. We may not, 
perhaps, in this matter or in that, have acted precisely up to 
the opinions of one person or of another ; and hard indeed it is, 
as we all know by our individual and private experience, to find 
any number of men agreeing entirely in any matter on which 
they may not be equally possessed of the details of the facts, 
circumstances, reasons, and conditions which led to action. 
But, making allowance for those differences of opinion which 
may fairly and honourably arise among those wno concur in 
general views, I maintain that the principles which can be 
traced through all our foreign transactions, as the guiding rule 
and directing spirit of our proceedings, are such as deserve 
approbation. I therefore fearlessly challenge the verdict which 
this House, as representing a political, a commercial, a consti- 
tutional country, is to give on the question now brought before 
it — whether the principles on which the foreign policy of Her 
Majesty's Government has been conducted, and the sense of 
duty which has led us to think ourselves bound to afford pro- 
tection to our fellow-subjects abroad, are proper and fitting 
guides for those who are charged' with the government of Eng- 
land; and whether, as the Roman in days of old held him- 
self free from indignity when he could say, ' Civia Romwnut 
8wm* so also a British subject, in whatever land he maybe, 
shall feel confident that the watchful eye and the strong arm of 
England will protect him against injustice and wrong. 

As Lord Palmerslon sat down the House greeted 
him with loud and prolonged cheers, echoing, as it 
seemed, by anticipation, the words extorted later on ifl 
the debate from his generous antagonist, Sir Eobert 
Peel, when he declared, * It has made us all proud of 
Tiim.' This, as is well known, was Peel's last appear- 
ance in the House. He was killed next day by a fa! 
from his horse. 




Towards the early dawn of the fifth day of discussion 
a. division of 310 against 264 gave a majority of 46 
in support of his conduct of foreign affairs. In the 
following letters he announces the result to his corre- 
spondents : — 

F. 0. : June 29, 1850. 

My dear Normanby, — Our debate in the House of Commons 
finished at near four o'clock this morning, and we had about 
the majority which we had reckoned upon ; our calculation 
fluctuated between forty and fifty. Our triumph has been com- 
plete in the debate as well as in the division ; and, all things 
considered, I scarcely ever remember a debate which, as a dis- 
play of intellect, oratory, and high and dignified feeling, was 
more honourable to the House of Commons. 

John Russell's speech last night was admirable and first-rate; 
and as to Cockburn's, 1 I do not know that I ever, in the course 
of my life, heard a better speech from anybody, without any 

Gladstone's was also a first-rate performance, and Peel and 
Disraeli both spoke with great judgment and talent with refer- 
ence to their respective positions. 

But the degree of public feeling which has been excited out 
rf doors upon the matters on which the debate and division 
;urned is most remarkable, and would have led to very strong 
manifestations if the result of the division had been to throw 
he Government into the hands of our opponents. 

C. G. : July 8, 1850. 
My dear William, — You will have seen before this time how 
»mpletely the House of Commons have reversed the petulant 
ind factious and foolish vote of the House of Lords, but you can- 
not appreciate from newspaper reports, nor know from newspaper 
solumns, the admirable and enthusiastic spirit displayed on this 
matter by the majority of the House of Commons, and by all 
the leading county papers, and by the nation at large. The 
attack on our foreign policy has been rightly understood by 
everybody, as the shot fired by a foreign conspiracy, aided and 
abetted by a domestic intrigue ; and the parties have so entirely 
foiled in the purpose, that instead of expelling and overthrowing 
me with disgrace, as they intended and hoped to do, they have 
rendered me for the present the most popular Minister that for 
* very long course of time has held my office. 

* Now Lord Chief Justice of England. 


The speech I had to make, which could not be comprise 
within a snorter time than from a quarter before ten to twent 
minutes past two, was listened to very patiently and attentive!; 
by the House, and has had great success with everybody. 

Two hundred and fifty members of the Reform Club hav< 
invited me to a dinner next Saturday to celebrate my victory, 
and if we had not thought it better to limit the demonstration 
to a small scale, the dinner would have been given in Covent 
Garden Theatre, and would have been attended by a thousand 

I myself, the Government, and the country are much 
indebted to the Burgraves and to Stanley. But the House of 
Lords has been placed in an unfortunate position, and Stanley 
has not raised his reputation as a statesman. 

Peel's death is a great calamity, and one that seems to have 
had no adequate cause. He was a very bad and awkward rider, 
and his horse might have been sat by any better equestrian ; 
but he seems, somehow or other, to have been entangled in the 
bridle, and to have pulled the horse to step or kneel upon him. 
The injury to the shoulder was severe but curable ; that which 
killed him was a broken rib, forced by great violence inward* 
into the lungs. 

Immediately after this successful combat the por- 
trait of Lord Palmerston, by Partridge, which was sc 
well known in later years to the frequenters of Cam- 
bridge House, where it hung on the staircase, was 
presented to Lady Palmerston by a hundred and twentj 
members of the House of Commons. They added to il 
a written address, expressive of ' their high sense of hii 
public and private character, and of the independerr 
policy by which he maintained the honour and interest 
of his country.' 

It was altogether a great triumph for Lord Pa! 
merston. ' His speech/ according to the testimony o 
Sir George Lewis, 1 ' was an extraordinary effort. H* 
defeated the whole Conservative party, Protectionist 
and Peelites, supported by the extreme Radicals, an< 
backed by the " Times," and all the organised forces c 
foreign diplomacy/ 

1 Sir G. Lewis to Sir E. Head, page 227 of < Letters.' . 


Every element of hostility and of pent-up animosity 
which had been long gathering against him were on 
this occasion brought into one focus, but he only ex- 
panded the more instead of shrivelling under the burn- 
ing-glass. He vindicated both with courage and, as we 
have seen, with eloquence all his actions at the Foreign 
Office, as being dictated solely by his care for the position 
and well-being of his country, and stamped himself 
upon the minds of the English people, according to Lord 
John Russell's long-remembered words, as emphatically 
and in a special sense, a Minister of England. 

if " 




While still detained in town by the arrears of the 
session of 1850, he sends to his brother a report of his 
own position and of the state of parties. His estimate 
of Lord Aberdeen's capacity for the Premiership was 
destined to be tested within two years. 

C. G. : September 1, 1850. 
I have been more entirely swamped by business during the 
whole of this last session of Parliament than I ever was at any 
former time, and I have not even yet been able to work up the 
arrear of various matters which has accumulated by the regular 
overflowing of almost every day. But I have no reason to find 
fault with the session, for it has left me at its close in a very 
satisfactory and gratifying position. I have beaten and pat 
down and silenced, at least for a time, one of the most wide- 
spread and malignant and active confederacies that ever con- 
spired against one man without crushing him. But I was in 
the right, and I was able to fight my battle ; and John Russell 
and my colleagues behaved most handsomely and honourably* 
and my triumph has been in proportion to the magnitude of 
the struggle. The death of Louis Philippe delivers me from 
my most artful and inveterate enemy, whose position gave him 
in many ways the power to injure me ; and though I am very 
sorry for the death of Peel, from personal regard, and because 
it is no doubt a great loss to the country, yet as far as my own 
political position is concerned, I do not think that he was ever 
disposed to do me any good turn. It is difficult to say what 
effect his death will have on the state of parties in Parliament 
He had not much of a following latterly, though the men who 


still stuck to him, such as Goulbourn, Robert Clive, Cardwell 
and Banks, and the like, were the most respectable of the 
party. Perhaps Sidney Herbert, or Aberdeen, or Gladstone 
may set up for leader of the Conservative Free Traders, or the 
Free Trade Conservatives ; and perhaps Stanley may invite- a, 
junction with him by some compromise about putting off Pro- 
tection. I have been told by a person who had it from Stanley 
himself, that during the time when a change of Government 
was expected, Aberdeen said to Stanley that in that case he, 
Aberdeen, would be commissioned by the Queen to form a 
Government! This would have been a curious dish to set 
before a Queen ! On the whole, I rather am inclined to think 
that the Government is made stronger by the events of last 
session, and that we may look forward to getting successfully 
through the session of next year. 

I made acquaintance lately with a Sicilian Princess — 
Montevoyo, I think, she calls herself — a widow, and one of 
the ladies of the Queen of Naples. She spoke highly of you ; 
but then I must add she spoke also highly of the King of 
Naples, which makes her praise of less value. 

What Lord Palmerston, a wise friend to Turkey, 
thought and said about it, is still of so much interest 
that I here quote three or four letters on its affairs 
written about this time. They at any rate show that 
Bhe has not continued to sink for want of warning. She 
was at the time contemplating her first loan, and Lord 
Palmerston's prognostications addressed to Sir Stratford 
Canning proved very correct. 

C. G. : August 7, 1850. 
My dear Canning, — I am sorry to hear so indifferent an 
account of ' progress ' in Turkey as that which your letter 
rf July 19 contains. I will exhort through the ambassador 
here. But how is it supposed that a foreign loan would help 
the Porte ? Would not such a loan add, by the amount of its 
interest and sinking fund, to the burthens of the State ? and 
would there not be a danger that a large part of it would 
8omehow or other find its way into the pockets of private 
individuals 1 As to Douad Pasha, or Douad Effendi, he has, I 
think, lost all power of doing mischief here, and perhaps that 
may be the reason why he tarries in the East ; or maybe he 
thinks that, as the wise men are said to have come from thence, 
he may pick up there some of that wisdom which he so much 


lacks. But the Arabs have a proverb which says you may 
send a jackass to Mecca, and he will come back a jackass still. 

Lord Palmerston's ' exhortation ' was as follows :— 

Broadlandfl : September 24, 1850. 

Mon cher Ambassadeur, — Permettez que je vous renouvelle 
par ecrit la priere que je vous ai faite verbalement pour vous 
engager a tirer l'attention la plus serieuse de votre Gouverne- 
ment au memorandum que Sir S. Canning a presents au Sultan; 
je voudrais y aj outer la demande que votre Gouvernement 
veuille bien prendre en consideration des observations que le 
Colonel Rose 1 a faites au sujet de votre armee, et que Sir S. 
Canning aura deja soumises au grand vizier. 

Pardonnez-moi si j'ai l'air de m'ingerer dans des anaires qui 
ne me regardent pas, et croyez bien que ce que je dis, je le dis 
uniquement dans l'inter&t du Sultan et de son Empire. L*Em- 
pire Ottoman n'est pas encore en 6tat de maintenir son ind6- 
pendance, et de deTendre son vaste territoire contre les ennemis 
qui le menacent sans l'aide et Tappui de temps en temps de la 
Grande-Bretagne. Le Gouvernement Anglais a le sincere dear 
et la ferme intention de vous dormer toujours dans des momens 
de difficulte Tappui dont vous aurez besoin. Mais le (Gouverne- 
ment anglais le peut agir qu'en autant qu'il est soutenu par le 
Parlement et par l'opinion publique; et ces soutiens nous 
manqueraient si nous ne pouvions pas demontrer que le Gou- 
vernement Ottoman a fait tous les efforts en son pouvoir pour 
mettre toutes les branches de radministration de la Turquie 
dans le meilleur 6tat possible, et n'a rien omis qui pourrait 
contribuer a mettre la Turquie en 6tat de se deiendre en deve- 
loppant toutes les grandes ressources naturelles dont la Provi- 
dence l'a douee. 

Jusqu'a present il faut Tavouer ceci ne peut pas se dire. 
Votre Gouvernement a eu sans doute a lutter contre maints 
obstacles ; mais pour accomplir de grands resuitats il faut de 
grands efforts, et de la determination, et de la perseverance. 

A Constantinople on chancelle, on hesite, on s'arr^te. M&k 
le moment actuel est favorable pour faire des r^fbrmes et des 
ameliorations. Le proverbe anglais dit qu'il faut faire le foin e 
pendant que le soleil luit. U faut reparer sa maison pendant 
qu'il fait calme, aim d'etre en mesure contre Touragan. 

Les points principaux que je voudrais signaler conune 
demandant l'attention pratique de votre Gouvernement sont : 

1 Now Lord Strathnairn. 


f'TJne perception plus exacte du revenu, sans exiger de qui 

fa* oe soit plus qu'il ne doit payer; et cessation du systeme par 

fuel on afferme la collection des imp6ts. 

■ Economie dans les depenses, choisissant d'abord les depenses 

toeesaires et remettant ce qui ne Test pas. 

? Par consequent ne perdant pas de temps a construire des 

fctoutes de Commerce, des fortifications pour le Bosphore, a 

sparer les forteresses sur la frontiere, a etablir des ouvrages 

war la defense de la capitale. 

:i L'administration de la justice devrait etre sans reproche; 

A pretend que maintenant cet etat de choses n'existe pas, et 

les preuves en sont nombreuses. 

Toute distinction politique et civile entre les differentes 
•Usees des sujets du Sultan par raison de difference de religion 
fcvrait e*tre abolie, afin que le Sultan puisse devenir egalement 
h Souverain de toutes les populations qui habitent son Empire. 
1 Quant a Farmee il parait que l'artillerie est excellente, 
hshdpitaux admirables; mais que l'infanterie est susceptible 
^ameliorations, et que la cavaierie en a grand besom. Que 
fcg cavaliers ne sont pas bien armes, ayant quitte une excellente 
4p6e qu'ils avaient autrefois pour en prendre une assez mauvaise, 
46 qu'en general ils ne sont pas fort adroits dans le maniement 
&i de l'epee ni de la lance. 

Bon voyage. Je vous souhaite personellement tout le 
fanheur possible, et je fais des vceux pour que votre pays 
tttienne une prosperity rapide et avec cela solide. 

Mille complimens, 


8. E. Mehemet Pasha. 

Broadlands : September 24, 1850. 
My dear Canning, — I have just taken leave of the Turkish 
ambassador, who starts on Thursday for Constantinople. I 
took the opportunity of requesting him to impress upon his 
Government the necessity of improvement and reforms, and of 
putting an end to the prevalent system of corruption and in- 
justice; and I begged him to recommend strongly to the 
*ttention of his Government the Memorandum which you had 
pven to the Sultan. There is obviously a great deal wanting 
to be done in every way and in every branch of administration 
to bring Turkey into line with other Powers, and to put her 
urto a condition to defend herself. But much has already been 
ac °omplished, perhaps more than ever yet was done in the 
SMue space of time in any country in which there was so much. 


room for improvement ; and I am not discouraged, therefore, 
by the apparent slowness of progress, but only encouraged to 
urge them on to further advance. It may be true that much 
of what has hitherto been done exists more in regulations and 
orders than in actual execution ; but one ought not to under- 
value the worth of rules, and laws, and institutions, even when 
they are not practically acted upon to the extent of their letter 
and spirit. As long as forms remain they are a fixed point 
to refer to ; and as men improve and opinion grows more power- 
ful, those forms become more and more the guide for conduct 
and events, and that which at first is only theory in course of 
time is converted into practice. 

As to foreign officers in the Turkish service, such men would 
necessarily impart to the Turkish officers notions and knowledge 
that would be very useful ; and the mere fact of Christians 
serving in this way in the Turkish army would have its effect 
in breaking down that exclusive and fanatical feeling which is 
represented as a bar to the admission of Christian subjects of 
the Porte to situations of military command. 

Why does the Turkish Government not get some Prussian 
instructors for their cavalry 1 The Prussian cavalry is excel- 
lent, and, indeed, the Turkish infantry could not be drilled and 
organised upon a better model than that of the Prussian service. 

I remember at the reviews in 1817 or 1818 of the armies of 
occupation in France, the Duke of Wellington being asked 
which he thought the best army, the Austrian, the Russian, or 
the Prussian. His reply was : * To say which are the best troops 
is to say a great deal more than I will take on myself to affirm; 
but I will tell you which of the three I should like best to 
command in action. I should decidedly prefer the Prussians; 
they are the handiest, the best organised, and the most in- 

Lord Palmerston was always especially emphatic 
in his declarations that it was necessary for the pros- 
perity of Turkey that her Christian population should 
be placed and treated on a footing of absolute equality 
"with the Mussulman. He urges it in the foregoing 
communication to Mehemet Pasha, and a year later he 
repeats it to M. Musurus, in reply to a note expressing 
the ambassador's regret at the events which caused 
Lord Pahnerston's retirement from the Government. 
The letter is dated December 30, 1851, and runs as 
follows :— 


Agreez, je vous en prie, mes remerciments les plus sinceres 
de yoke aimable lettre, et soyez persuade que, quelle que soit la 
position politique dans laquelle je pourrai me trouver, je serai 
toujours fidele aux principes qui me font voir un interet non- 
seulement Anglais, mais Europeen dans l'independance et le 
Ken-fore de l'Empire Ottoman, et vous connaissez bien mon 
intime conviction que la prosperite de cet empire ne reposera 
jamais sur une base vraiment solide tant que les sujets chretiens 
fa Sultan ne sont pas places sur un pied d"egalit£ devant la loi 
ivec les sujets de la religion Musulmane. 

I add also a passage from a letter to Sir Stratford 
banning : — 

Ought not this consideration to show the Turkish Govern- 
D6ot how important it is that they should lose no time in 
emoving all civil and political distinctions between Mussulmen 
nd Rayahs 1 I pressed this yesterday on the Turkish ambas- 
idor, and represented that, at present, the Sultan not only 
eprives himself of the use of his left arm, but runs constantly 
le risk of being himself belaboured by it. Mehemet Pasha 
fenowledged the justice of the remark. 1 

An attack upon General Haynau by the men of 
irclay's brewery gave Lord Palmerston some trouble 

the autumn of this year. General Haynau, an 
osirian general, who hJ won an evil reputation in 
ie Hungarian war for great cruelties and alleged flog- 
ng of women, came to London and went to visit the 
remises of Barclay and Perkins. As soon as his 
resence was known, a number of draymen came out 
ith brooms and dirt, shouting out, 6 Down with the 
.tistrian butcher ! 9 He fled with the mob at his heels, 
nd took refuge in a public-house by the river-side, till 
lie police came to his rescue and took him away in a 
K)lice-galley to a place of safety. The following letter 
toout it is to Sir George Grey, who was then Home 
Secretary: — 

Broadlands : October 1, 1850. 
My dear Grey, — Koller 2 is very reasonable about the 
Saynau matter, and I believe that Schwarzenberg makes his. 

1 To Sir Stratford Canning, F. 0., October 11, 1849. 

2 Austrian ambassador. 


move more to satisfy the feelings of the Austrian army than . 
from any interest he himself takes about Haynau, who is ift < 
disgrace with the Austrian Government, and has been mock 
blamed in Austrian society at Vienna for his atrocities. 

I told Roller that it is much better that no prosecution 
should take place, because the defence of the accused would 
necessarily be a minute recapitulation of all the barbarities 
committed by Haynau in Italy and Hungary, and that would 
be more injurious to him and to Austria than any verdict 
obtained against the draymen could be satisfactory. 

I must own that I think Haynau's coming here, without 
rhyme or reason, so soon after his Italian and Hungarian 
exploits, was a wanton insult to the people of this country, 
whose opinion of him had been so loudly proclaimed at public 
meetings and in all the newspapers. But the draymen were = 
wrong in the particular course they adopted. Instead of 
striking him, which, however, by Roller's account, they did 
not do much, they ought to have tossed him in a blanket, rolled 
him in the kennel, and then sent him home in a cab, paying 
his fare to the hotel. 

Metternich and Neumann strongly advised him, as he 
passed through Brussels, not to come to England at present; 
and Roller tried to persuade him to cut off his long yellow 
moustaches. But he would not shave, and he professed to 
think that his presence in England could turn public opinion 
in his favour. 

I explained to Roller that the people of this country treat 
with respect, and even with kindness, their bitterest political 
enemies when duty or necessity brings them here. Buonaparte 
received no insult at Plymouth, Soult was received wifll 
enthusiasm, Metternich, Louis Philippe, and Guizot wift 
courteous and kind hospitality ; but Haynau was looked upon, 
no matter wrongly or rightly, in the same light as the 
Mannings and Tawell, and he ought to have had a couple of 
policemen to go about with him to protect him from the honed 
indignation of the mob. The Austrian Government, however, 
think that the proceedings at Barclay's were got up by a Br 
Trencke, formerly editor of a Liberal paper at Vienna, now ai 
exile here, and employed as a clerk in Barclay's establishment, j 

The rivalry between Austria and Prussia for the 
leadership of Germany was complicating matters in 
that country. On the question of the entrance of 


Austria into the German confederation, France and 
England had initiated an understanding. Both Govern- 
ments feared the effect that might be produced on the 
relations of the Great Powers by the carrying out of 
the Austrian plan. 

Lord Palmerston had been engaged during the year 
in a tedious and vain mediation between Denmark and 
Prussia about the interminable Sleswig-Holstein dis- 
pute, The details of all these events are no longer of 
interest ; but the contents of the following letter fore- 
lhadow the events of 1866 : — 

F. 0. : November 22, 1850. 
My dear Cowley, — German affairs are indeed come to a 
8taft of chaos. The only thing that seems pretty clear is, that 
all parties are more or less in the wrong. But Prussia seems 
to bear away the palm in this respect. Her course has been, 
indeed, dishonest, inconsistent, and irresolute and weak. In 
regard to the Sleswig-Holstein question, she has throughout 
acted with the greatest duplicity and bad faith ; in regard to 
German aflfeirs, her only object from beginning to end seems to 
have been her own aggrandisement, which, at moments when 
much was within her grasp, she had not courage or steadi- 
ness successfully to pursue. Her partisans try to make out 
that the contest between her and Austria is a struggle between 
constitutional and arbitrary government; but it is no such 
thing, it is only a conflict between the two leading Powers in 
Ctermany as to which should be politically preponderant. We 
rikould have had no objection to see Prussia take the first 
fkce; on the contrary, a German Union, embracing all the 
Mailer States, with Prussia at its head, and in alliance with 
-Austria as a separate Power, would have been a very good 
European arrangement; but when the empire was offered to 
Prussia, the King shrank from the hazardous position thus 
proposed to him, and declined to accept it till he should be 
•aked to do so by the Sovereigns. That decided the question, 
fcr it was pretty certain that the Sovereigns would never 
trouble him with such a request. But the empire having 
been thus negatived, Prussia ought to have taken at once the 
only other possible course, and to have come to an agreement 
wth Austria for reconstructing the German confederation on 
he principle of the treaty of 1815, with such modifications as 
lie establishment of parliaments in Prussia and Austria and 


all the other States might render necessary. Instead of this, 
Prussia went on pottering about an Erfurth Union, which 
never could end in anything but smoke, and then she chose 
deliberately to expose herself to the humiliation of being 
obliged by military threats to retreat step by step from all the 
positions she had taken up in regard to almost all pending 
affairs. All this is lamentable, and is a fresh proof thai 
honesty is the best policy. What Austria means to do remain! 
to be seen. The Austrians declare that they mean to have * 
Parliament of their own, and not to put down constitutional 
government in any other country. We shall see. In the 
meanwhile enormous armies have been put into the field on 
both sides just as winter is setting in, and without any intelli- 
gible question to fight about. The only thing that both sides 
ought immediately to do is to send these useless soldiers lwme 
to their stoves and provision stores. In the meanwhile, RftW 
on one side and France on the other, notwithstanding their 
fair professions, must be inwardly chuckling at seeing Germany 
come down in so short a time from Einheit to intense exas- 
peration and to the brink of civil war. 

The Papal aggression and the passing of the 
Ecclesiastical Titles Bill was now occupying public 
attention. Lord Palmerston expounds his views of the 
question to his brother. 

C. G. : January 27, 1851. 

During the month at Christmas that we spent at Broad- 
lands I broke loose, and, instead of working all day long in 
my north room and only rushing out at sunset, as I did hi 
September and October, I took a fling, and went out several 
days hunting and shooting in the fine of the early day, coming 
home, of course, for work earlier than if I had been only * 

Public afiairs are going on as well as they can ever at any 
time be expected to do. Food has been abundant and cheap, the , 
labouring classes fully employed, and in all respects better off 
than they have been for a very long period of time. Poor ratei 
are greatly reduced, and though farmers complain, and renti 
have been generally lowered, yet, all things considered, neither 
the owners nor the occupiers of land have any great cause 
to complain. The cheapness of all things makes up in some 
degree for small diminutions of income. In Ireland, toot 
things are looking better, and rent is not that absolutely 



inknown quantity which it has been for some years past. The 
evenue has been productive, and we shall have a surplus of 
tbout two millions. This will not, however, enable us to take 
jff the income tax, which will expire this year, and which we 
must propose the renewal of. This will produce some trouble- 
lome debates, but I have no doubt of its being carried; we 
ih&ll be assisted in carrying it by many who want particular 
taxes taken off, which cannot be repealed or modified if the 
income tax is not renewed, because in that case, instead of a 
surplus to scramble for, there would be a deficit to provide for. 
Die income tax produces upwards of five millions. 

The Papal aggression question will give us some trouble 
md give rise to stormy debates. Our difficulty will be to find 
rat a measure which shall satisfy reasonable Protestants, 
rithout violating those principles of liberal toleration which 
re 'are pledged to. I think we shall succeed. But all the 
iBwspaper stories of divisions in the Cabinet on this or any 
rfher question are pure inventions, wholly devoid of any foun- 
ktion. The Pope, I hear, and the people about him by whom 
it present he is guided, affect to treat lightly the excitement 
rhich his measures have produced in this country, and they 
represent the clamour as a thing got up by the Church — a 
parson agitation. They deceive themselves; the feeling is 
general and intense all through the nation, and the sensible 
Catholics themselves lament what has been done. 

The thing itself, in truth, is little or nothing, and does not 
justify the irritation. What has goaded the nation is the 
manner, insolent and ostentatious, in which it has been done. 
The Catholics have a right to organise their church as they 
like; and if staff officers called Bishops were thought better 
than staff officers called Vicars Apostolic, nobody would have 
remarked or objected to the change if it had been made quietly 
md only in the bosom of the Church. But what offended — 
and justly — all England was the Pope's published Allocution 
ind Wiseman's announcement of his new dignities. The first 
representing England as a land of benighted heathens ; the 
second proclaiming that the Pope had parcelled out England 
Into districts — a thing that only a Sovereign has a right to do 
—and that he, Wiseman, and others were sent, and to be sent, 
to govern those territorial districts, with titles belonging 
ihereto. This could not and would not have been done or 
attempted in any other country without the consent of the 

The Pope or his advisers pretended at first that they had 


the consent of the English Government, through Minto, in 
November, 1847 — three years ago ; but they were soon driven 
out of that assertion ; and then Wiseman brought it down to 
a mere statement that the intention was made known to Minto 
in 1847, and that he said nothing and made no observation. 

Now even this did not take place ; and if it had, in a matter 
of such importance, silence cannot be construed into consent. 
Moreover, Minto was at Rome upon quite another matter, and 
had no instructions on this subject ; and if the Pope wanted 
the consent of the English Government, he should have asked 
for it ; and not having asked for it or obtained it, he should 
not quote it as a justification of his course. He might in the 
three years have asked the question ; and there was one oppor- 
tunity specially of doing so, for in August, when Wiseman was 
on the point of setting out for Rome to settle all these matters, 
he wrote to ask an interview with John Russell, and was with 
him more than half an hour ; that was the time to have ascer- 
tained from the head of the Government himself what would 
be thought of the cut-and-dry measure ; but not a word did 
Wiseman say on the matter, and his excuse for his silence now 
is that he did not then think the measure likely to be so im- 
mediate. But he must have thought it as near as the Pope k 
supposed to have thought it in November 1847, when he pro- 
tends to have spoken to Minto about it (which, however, he 
did not) ; and so far from Wiseman not supposing the measure 1 
to be near, we know full well that the Pope's excuse, as pot " 
forward, is that Wiseman pressed the measure upon him, said 
he knew England and the English people, and would he 
answerable that it would go off smoothly. 

We must bring in a measure ; the country would not be 
satisfied without some legislative enactment. We shall make 
it as gentle as possible. The violent Protestant party wiB 
object to it for its mildness, and will endeavour to drive us 
further. The Pope might help us to resist that pressure if he 
would do certain things that would allay public feeling. For 
instance, if he would disclaim any pretension to govern by his 
bishops any but the Catholics in the districts to which those 
bishops are appointed. It sounds almost childish to suggest < 
such a truism; but many people, forgetting that he can no J 
more claim jurisdiction or authority over Protestants than over 
the winds and waves or the tides of the ocean, and looking to 
the words of the Allocution and of Wiseman's announcements, 
imagine that he does, and some public disclaimer would be 
useful. Again, offence has been taken at the territorial titles. 


iese are unnecessary. Instead of appointing an Archbishop 
Westminster, and Bishops of this or that place, the Pope 
Lght have appointed Archbishops and Bishops for the gover- 
mce of the Roman Catholics (the word Romcm is essential) in 
Liddlesex, Hertfordshire, &c., as the case might be, their epis- 
ipal locality for titles continuing to be places in partibus infi- 
&um. These two measures, if adopted by the Pope, would 
o far to allay the storm and restore harmony between Protes- 
mt and Catholic. But what would complete the calm would 
& his writing to Wiseman to say that he would not go on 
ithout his personal advice at Rome. The departure of the 
ardinal would be the pledge of restored peace. If you should 
are an opportunity by chance of meeting the nuncio, you 
light throw out these suggestions ; not as demands made by 
ie English Government ; not as a commission given you from 
ance to be executed, but as what you know to be, and what 
on know in consequence of communications made to you from 
ence; and you may say that what you tell him is quite pri- 
ate and confidential, to be made known by him to his Court 
r not, as he may think best, but that you throw out the sug- 
estion in the most friendly spirit, and that you know that the 
Iritish Government are most desirous of maintaining for the 
toman Catholics in the Queen's dominions all the freedom and 
ml and political rights which existing laws have conferred 
ipon them. 

Lord Palmerston was always very earnest in his view 
)f the necessity for England being strong in her home 
lefences on land as well as by sea. Sir John Burgoyne 
had, in May 1850, written a Memorandum which called 
attention to our deficiencies in this respect. Lord 
Palmerston sends it to the Premier with the following 
observations : — 

I send you, to keep and ponder over at your leisure, a copy 
of a Memorandum on our want of national defence, drawn up 
by Sir John Burgoyne, and lent to me some months ago by 
Lard Anglesey. It is worth reading, though it is only a repe- 
tition of the opinions entertained and expressed by all men who 
know what war is, either by sea or by land. But I am well 
iware that it is almost as difficult to persuade the people of this 
ountry to provide themselves with the means of defence as it 
irould be for them to defend themselves without those means, 


and that although our internal condition may still be the ' envy 
of surrounding nations,' yet we have neither 

* Hearts resolved nor hands prepared, 
The blessings we enjoy to guard.' 

He also writes to Sir Charles Wood, then Chancellor 
of the Exchequer, about fortifications : — 

C. G. : January 22, 1851. 
My dear Wood, — I am glad to hear that you mean to tab 
j68,000 for going on with the fortifications at Pembroke, in 
addition to what is to be taken for the detached outworks at 
Portsmouth ; but could you not take a sum, however small, to 
make a beginning, for similar defences at Plymouth? Bar- 
goyne will tell you that Plymouth Dockyard is, if possible, still 
more exposed than the Portsmouth yard to be destroyed by 
shells from a small force landed in its neighbourhood. If 8,000 
or 10,000 men were landed at Whitesand Bay, or anywhere 
thereabouts, they might establish mortar batteries on shore 
opposite Plymouth yard without, I believe, being under fin 
from any existing work. Cronstadt, Sebastopol, Cherbourg 
Brest, and Toulon bristle with guns, and are secure against any 
attack by sea or land. Our yards, full of valuable material 
and containing the elements of our naval defence, are now 
indeed pretty safe from any attack by sea, but still at the 
mercy of an enemy on the land. The French proverb says, 
' C'est l'occasion qui fait le larron ; ' and the more the French 5 
shall see that our most important points are safe against a sur- ; 
prise, the greater will be our chances of continued peace. A 
session of Parliament is always full of unforeseen and unfore- 
seeable accidents ; and it would be a good thing, in the event 
of our official life being unexpectedly cut short, that we shonU* 
leave behind us indisputable proofs that we had made at least 
beginnings for the full protection of all our great dockyards. 

C. G. : January 24, 1851. 
As to Head's 1 book, I own I think it contains matter 
deserving of the most serious consideration of every English- 
man, and more especially of all those who are charged with tht t- 
destinies of the country. I mean those parts of his book whiA - 
detail the aggressive means of Powers who may become hostile 
and the slenderness of our own means of defence, together witli 
the ruinous effects of even the temporary occupation of tin 

1 Sir Francis Head. • 


crantry by a foreign army. As to his remedy, the amount of 
handing army which he proposes is not to be attained ; but I 
lold that no Government will have done its full duty to the 
xrantry which has not organised some dormant but partially 
trained force, of the nature of a militia or landwehr, which 
ooold be called out under arms in a fortnight or three weeks to 
the aggregate number of one hundred thousand in the two 
islands upon the first breaking out of a war. Every other 
xrantry that deserves to be called a Power has this kind of 
werve force — France, Austria, Prussia, the United States, 
Etnssia has it not, but merely because she keeps up a war estab- 
ishment in time of peace; though she, too, has in time of 
leace part of her regular army on furlough. England alone, 
rith a peace establishment inadequate for the defence of the 
ountry against invasion, has no means of increasing her defen- 
ive garrison on the outbreak of a war except by the tardy 
recess of voluntary enlistment into the line, or the equally 
bw operation of passing a Bill to repeal the Act suspending 
he ballot, going through the tedious and complicated operation 
f a ballot, of assembling, clothing, arming, officering, and 
tuning an army of men who never handled a musket or fixed 
, bayonet. Then we are told that in a moment of crisis the 
tation would rise like one man — a mere bitterly sarcastic 
rnism ; for a nation armed, as the English would be, with 
voomsticks and pitchforks, would be against a disciplined army 
tout as formidable as one man would be. 

On May 1 the Great Exhibition of all Nations was 
>pened in Hyde Park. Lord Palmerston went to the 
Beremony, and gives an account of the scene. England 
mis still foil of refugees, cast upon her shores by con- 
tinental revolutions, and their presence had inspired 
those who were responsible for the maintenance of order 
with some anxiety. 

C. G.: May 2, 1851. 
My dear Normanby, — Many thanks for your friendly good 
offices about * La Patrie.' Such articles, however intrinsically 
ally, ought certainly not to appear in newspapers known to be 
in partial communication with the Government; but Leon 
Gaucher has, I know, always had a dislike to me, or at least to 
ay particular doings ; and as to Guizot, I make allowances for 
nd forgive the rancour of 1 his feelings toward me. Winners 
an not only laugh, but pardon. 


But yesterday is the topic of thought and of word 
everybody in London. It was indeed a glorious day 
England ; and the way in which the royal ceremony went 
was calculated to inspire humility into the minds of the 
sentatives of foreign Governments and to strike despair into 
breasts of those, if any such there be, who may desire to 
confusion in this country. There must have been newer 
million than any other number of people who turned rat 
post themselves as they could to see some part of the 
and Mayne, the head of the police, told me he thought 
were about thirty-four thousand in the glass building. 
Queen, her husband, her eldest son and daughter, gave 
selves in full confidence to this multitude, with no other 
than one of honour and the accustomed supply of stick 
constables, to assist the crowd in keeping order among 
selves. Of course there were in reserve, in proper 
ample means of repressing any disorder if any had 
attempted ; but nothing was brought out and shown 
what I have mentioned ; and it was impossible for the in 1 
guests of a lady's drawing-room to have conducted thi 
with more perfect propriety than did this sea of human beintt ? 

The royal party were received with continued 
as they passed through the parks and round the TMi' 
House ; and it was also very interesting to witness the 
greeting given to the Duke of Wellington. I was just 
him and Anglesey, within two of them, during the procefflW 
round the building, and he was accompanied by an inceffltf* 
running fire of applause from the men and waving of handfe*- 
chiefs and kissing of hands from the women, who lined 4» 
pathway of march during the three-quarters of an hour thaift 
took us to march round. 

The building itself is far more worth seeing than anyttol 
in it, though many of its contents are worthy of admirati* 
You ought to contrive to run over to take a look at it befcrt 
its final close. 

Though this first day of the campaign has passed off so wel 
of course we shall have to keep a watchful eye during the vlwto 
four months upon those who might be disposed to take advtfr 
tage, for purposes of mischief, of the congregation of foreign 
in London ; but with the means we have of making such peof* 
pay dearly for any such attempt, I do not entertain any app* 
tension as to the result of any schemes they may plan. 

The Ministry had been in rather a tottering cfl^ 


dition for the last twelvemonth. Lord Palmerston's 
triumph on the Greek debate had acted as a decided 
tonic, but still its health was feeble. On February 13, 
it had a majority of only eleven against a Protectionist 
motion of Mr. Disraeli's; and a week later it was 
defeated on a motion for the extension of the county 
franchise. Accordingly, on February 22, Lord John 
Bossell resigned. Lord Stanley tried in vain to form 
a Ministry. Lord John in vain tried to form a 
coalition with the Peelites ; so it ended in the Whig 
Ministry coming back just as it was before, though 
only to survive for one more year — the usual fate of 
Cabinets which come back after a defeat. Lord Palmer- 
ston says to his brother : — 

C. G. : April 3, 1851. 
All things, politically, are looking tolerably well, and I 
think we may reckon ourselves pretty secure of remaining in 
office till next year. It would be ridiculous for us to resign 
now, after the failures to form another Government, unless 
the House of Commons were to pass a vote of censure or a 
resolution of no confidence, and that they are not likely to do. 
We may have some changes forced upon us in our financial 
arrangements for the Budget ; but that will not much signify. 
I see the Roman papers exulted greatly at our fall ; they will 
have learnt soon afterwards the melancholy news of our re- 
storation. Gladstone and Molesworth are full of the abominable 
tyranny exercised by the Neapolitan and Roman Governments. 
Gladstone says the Neapolitan is a Governo infernale, and that, 
as a gentleman and a Christian, he feels it his duty to make 
known what he has seen of its proceedings. Both of them say 
that they were wrong last year in their attacks on my foreign 
policy ; but they did not know the truth. This is satisfactory 
as far as I am concerned, though very unsatisfactory as regards 
the state of Italy. 

Our Papal Aggression Bill will be carried in spite of the 

opposition of the Irish members, who are driven on by the 

.influence of the priests over the Irish electors. But the feeling 

in England against the Catholics is deep, strong, and general, 

and what the Pope and his priests have lately done has 

materially injured the Catholic cause. All these exposures, 

N 2 


moreover, about Miss Talbot and Mr. Carr6 have tended i 
throw great discredit on the Catholic priesthood. 1 

I went one day to hear Gavazzi's harangue against th 
abuses of the Catholic Church. He spoke in Italian for ai 
hour and a half to several hundred hearers, with much eloqueno 
and effect. 

Soon after this, two letters, addressed to Lore 
Aberdeen by Mr. Gladstone on the subject of the Stafc 
prosecutions and the State prisons of the Neapolitai 
Government, were published in the form of a pamphlet 
The effect produced by these letters was very great 
The high character and position of the author gavi 
authority to his narrative of facts, attested as the] 
were by personal observation. He asserted that van 
numbers of innocent and untried men were confined ii 
the prisons of Naples for alleged political offences uncle: 
circumstances of great barbarity. Lord Palmerston, i 
the House of Commons, paid an emphatic tribute ti 
the course taken by Mr. Gladstone. He added thai 
concurring with the author of these letters that tfo 
influence of public opinion in Europe might have somi 
effect in setting such matters right, he had sent copie 
of the publication to the British Ministers at the voriofl 
Courts of Europe, directing them to give copies to eacl 

When the Neapolitan envoy in London saw tin 
account of what Lord Palmerston had said in tb 
House about the Gladstone letters, he wrote forwardin| 
a pamphlet which had been written to order by a Mr 
Macfarlane, in reply to Mr. Gladstone, and requests 
Lord Palmerston to send it round also to the severa 

1 * The feeling is more political than religious. The people of thi 
country bear with great composure mere differences in religion 
opinions. They are too much accustomed to such differences amoDj 
Protestants themselves to look with any hatred on such difference 
when exhibited between Protestants and Catholics ; but the Englifil 
nation are deeply impressed with the feeling that Catholic ascendanc; 
and civil and political freedom are incompatible. The history of tbei 
country teaches them that opinion, and it is that chord which has beet 
made to vibrate from one end of the land to the other.' — Lord Palmer 
ttnn to Mr. Shiel, April 3, 1851. 


European Courts. Lord Palmerston declined being 
accessory to giving circulation to a document which he 
characterised as ' only a tissue of bare assertion and 
Teckless denial, mixed up with coarse ribaldry and 
commonplace abuse of public men and political parties.' 
He then added, that as Prince Castelcicala had ad- 
dressed him on the subject, he felt compelled to say 
that — 

Mr. Gladstone's letters to Lord Aberdeen present an afflict- 
ing picture of a system of illegality, injustice, and cruelty, 
practised by the officers and agents of the Government in the 
kingdom of Naples, such as might have been hoped would not 
have existed in any European country at the present day ; and 
the information which has been received upon these matters 
from many other sources leads, unfortunately, to the conclusion 
that Mr. Gladstone by no means overstated the various evils 
which he describes. But Mr. Gladstone's letters were evidently 
written and published not, as the pamphlet which you have sent 
me insinuates, in a spirit of hostility to the King of Naples, or 
with feelings adverse to the parliamentary and monarchical 
constitution which his Sicilian Majesty has granted to his sub- 
jects, and has confirmed by his royal oath. Mr. Gladstone's 
object seems, on the contrary, to have been the friendly purpose 
of drawing public attention to, and of directing the force of 
public opinion upon, abuses which, if allowed to continue, 
must necessarily sap the foundations of the Neapolitan 
monarchy, and prepare the way for those violent revulsions 
which the resentments produced by a deep sense of long-con- 
tbraed and wide-spread injustice are sure sooner or later to 
produce. It might have been hoped that the Neapolitan 
Government would have received those letters in the spirit in 
which they manifestly were written, and would have set to 
work earnestly and effectually to correct those manifold and 
pave abuses to which their attention has thus been drawn. It 
w obvious that, by such a course, the Neapolitan Government 
would do more to frustrate the designs of revolutionists, and to 
rtrengthen the monarchical institutions of their country, than 
°ould be effected by the most vigorous proceedings of the most 
tigilant Minister of Police. 

While he thus addressed the Neapolitan Minister, 
he wrote as follows to his brother : — 


Broadlands : September 7, 1851. 

Your account of the effect produced by Gladstone's pamphlet 
is highly interesting and curious. The Neapolitan Government 
will not have been much pleased and edified by my answer to 
Castelcicala about Macfarlane's pamphlet, nor would they be 
much gratified if they were to receive a collection of all die 
articles which have appeared on this subject in the various 
newspapers in England and in Germany. 

I still hope that the discussion may do some good and excite 
some shame in their minds ; one might almost hope it would 
work some change in their conduct. 

The French, as you say, defend as well as they can the 
Neapolitan Government ; but they every now and then let out 
things which undermine their defence. Walewski told Milnes 
the other day, as a proof of the goodness of heart of the King 
of Naples, that at his, Walewski's, request the King had at 
one time promised to set free three hundred prisoners against 
whom no charge or no proof had been established. 'How 
grateful [said Milnes] these men must have been; did they 
not come to thank you for their release 1 ' ' Why [said Wa- 
lewski], you see, after the King had made the promise, the 
chief of the police came to him and said that if the men were 
set free, he could not answer for the King's life ; and so you 
see the men were not set free.' 

I sent you a copy of my answer to Castelcicala to be given to 
the Neapolitan Government, because I thought that my friend 
the Prince would probably not send them exactly a correct copy, 
but would probably lwive out the words about the King's oath. 

This ' answer to Castelcicala ' was kept back from 
the King by his Ministers. Lord Holland, writing from 
Naples, about two months afterwards, says : — l 

The Ministers keep back from the King any despatches that 
are disagreeable. Ho had only heard of your answer to Castel- 
cicala, but had never seen it till last Wednesday. It had only 
been described to him as ' une della solite impertinenze di Lorf 
Palmerston' — one of his usual impertinences ! Sabatelli read 
it to him ; it made a deep impression on him, and he said that 
it was a most important and ' bien redige* document. 

To his brother, still British Minister at Naples, he 
again writes about Neapolitan affairs. 

1 Lord Holland to Lord Palraerston, October 13, 1851. 


Brocket: November 6, 1851. 

What a picture you give of the state of things in Naples ! 
3an such a condition of things last ? But the French — at least 
ibe society of Paris — are all for the Neapolitan Government, 
bat only out of general spite and hatred to us ; and a cousin of 
Gladstone's was blackballed the other day at a club in Paris 
because he bore the same name as the writer of the letters to 

As to Oastelcicala's recall, I am neither glad nor sorry. He 
is a vulgar, coarse-mannered man ; but I do not suspect him of 
political intrigue beyond a certain average amount, and he gave trouble. As to Casini, we shall probably be able to 
keep him in order; and I believe it is rather useful than not 
that ultra Tories of other countries should be sent here; it 
generally has the effect of somewhat modifying their violence. 

Kossuth's reception must have been gall and wormwood to 
the Austrians and to the Absolutists generally. His reception 
would probably have been much better if he had not published 
or written that absurdly violent production at Marseilles. But 
it has been remarked that at none of the meetings which have 
bean held to greet him have any gentlemen appeared except 
Dudley Stuart, and, on one occasion, John Abel Smith. He is 
going to the United States on the 14th; and I believe that, 
after remaining there some little time, he intends to return here. 
But perhaps he may stay there longer than he now proposes to 
h t for his avowed Republican theories of government will find 
more sympathy there than here. 

We have unpleasant accounts from the Cape ; but these are 
only small and partial checks, and Sir Henry Smith, when he 
wrote last, said that as soon as the reinforcements then on their 
way should have reached him, he should be quite able to deal 
with the Cafires, and he would get a battalion more than he 
expected. Still, however, this war costs us some valuable lives, 
and will absorb a large part of our surplus revenue. 
. I do not see any rock ahead which is likely to wreck the 
Government ; we shall have some difficulty, perhaps, about the 
extension of suffrage next session, but I understand, privately, 
that Lord Derby finds himself so liable to repeated attacks of 
gout, that he begins to be less desirous than he used to be to 
become Prime Minister. Perhaps also the possession of a large 
estate gives him as much employment as he wants, and he may 
think it enough to be able to make flashy speeches now and then 
in the House of Lords. 


I fear that Panizzi will not have been able, even with the 
assistance of Aumale, to persuade the King of Naples to change 
his system towards his wretched subjects. Really, such sove- 
reigns as those who rule over Naples and Greece are enough to 
make men Republicans. 1 

The Ionian Islands had recently received a new and 
more liberal constitution. With the enlarged oppor- 
tunities for agitation thereby acquired the Ionian Par- 
liament had become unmanageable, and attempted to 
pass a resolution in favour of annexation to Greece. Sir 
Henry Ward, the British Commissioner, had much 
trouble in keeping matters quiet. Lord Palmerston 
corresponds with him on the subject, and favours the 
retention of Corfu, whatever might be done with the 
other islands. He naturally saw that it would be useless 
to hand over Corfu to any great Power that was not a 
great maritime Power. Hence, when on one occasion 
the question was raised of giving it to Austria, lie sum- 
marised his opinion by saying, < To give Corfu to Austria 
would be like entrusting a duckling to a respectable old 

Broadlands : December 26, 1850. 
My dear Ward, — I have received yours of the 13th, with 
the copy of the resolution for union with Greece. If we wished 
really to punish the Ionians, we should grant this request and 
hand them over to the constitutional Government • of King 
Otho. But this would be too severe a chastisement upon a 
nation for the sins of a few. There is, as you probably well 
know, a foolish and pedantic notion among some of the clerks 
in the Colonial Office that it would be better to get rid (as they 
term it) of the Ionian Islands. This notion was, I believe, first 
taken up by Stephen, 2 an excellent and very learned, but ex- 
ceedingly wrong-headed, man. My opinion is very different 
I consider Corfu as a very important position for Mediterranean 
interests, in the event of a war, and I hold that it would be a 
great act of folly for us to give it up. It could not be kept 
permanently by any Power that was not strong at sea, and it 

1 This reminds one of Madame de Coigny, who, when asked by the 
Prince of Wales (afterwards George IV.)> * Pourquoi done 6tes-vons si 
democrate ? ' replied, * Mais e'est que j'ai v6cu tant avec dee princes.' 

* Sir James Stephen. 


)nld therefore, sooner or later, fall into the hands of Russia 
1 France, to neither of which it could belong without much 
image to us. 

And, a little later on, to the same : — 

F. 0. : February 18, 1851. 

You will have no visit from a Russian fleet this year. We 
re on the best possible terms with Russia, and she will do 
lothing openly to disoblige us. I should even doubt her being 
he instigator of the disturbances which give you trouble, though 
t would be quite in keeping with her standing policy to have 
bmented them by money and intrigues. But just at the present 
hue I think Austria is more likely to have done us an ill turn. 

Schwarzenberg and the Vienna Camarilla, Archduchess So- 
ihia, and others, hate us with the bitterest hatred for the part 
rfrich the English Government, Parliament, and people have 
iken during the last three years about Italy, Hungary, and 
famany, and these worthies would be glad to revenge them- 
fttoes for our sympathy in favour of their insurgents, by creat- 
yg insurrection anywhere and anyhow against British authority; 
ad though the Austrian Government is nearly bankrupt, yet, 
ke other spendthrifts, it can always bring out money for its 
torn plaisirs. 

About the plots which were going on, he says to the 
Egh Commissioner : — 

C. G. : November 19, 1851. 
These conspirators may be confident — as all conspirators are 
pfc to be — that the day of their triumph is approaching ; so say 
be French Red Republicans in England ; but those days of 
rinmph will recede as time advances, just as the mirage of the 
MBrt retires before the slow march of the caravan. It is well, 
wwever, to be on our guard, for it is only over-confidence and 
pathy in governors than can give such ragamuffins a chance of 
access. I am amused at the notion that I am to be accused of 
laving excited and paid for the recently attempted inroad upon 
he Ionian Islands. I remember to have heard that, in former 
*BM8 at Cambridge, it was the fashion for the young men to 
Ro6 each other's rooms, that is, to turn everything topsy-turvy ; 
uid one foolish fellow got drunk and mobbed his own rooms, 
toot being able to get at a friend's. I am still, however, sober 
enough not to play such pranks with our own house. I daresay 
•h* Greek Government is very angry with me for having shown 


them up about robbery to all the Governments of Europe, and 
no doubt they have had admonitions even from those Govern- 
ments which pretended to us that they would not and could not 
meddle in the matter. The more angry they feel, however, the 
more likely it is that they will bestir themselves to improve 
matters ; still, I fear that as long as Otho sits like an incubus 
on the Greek throne, no Greek progress will be made in that 
career of improvement which the Greek nation is destined ulti- 
mately to run. 

For my part, I should not object to an arrangement bjT 
which Corfu should be annexed to the British Empire and the 
other islands added to Greece. Corfu is an important military 
and naval post, and ought never to be abandoned by us ; the 
other islands might go to Greece without inconvenience, I 
should think, to us, though at present such a transfer would be 
attended with much inconvenience to them. No such arrange- 
ment, however, could be made. without the formal concurrence 
of all the Powei-s who were parties to the Treaty of Vienna, bf 
which the Seven Island State was placed under our protection; 
and it is not very likely that France, Austria, and Rusfflft 
would consent to give us Corfu ; and perhaps Russia would not 
fancy any addition to the Greek State, though she may like to 
keep up a disturbing agitation in the Ionian Islands. All this, 
however, is a speculation in the clouds ; but whenever you write 
to me again, let me know what you think of it. 

Lord Palmerston, however, modified his views later 
on, and, in 1862, cordially agreed to hand over all the 
Ionian Islands to the new kingdom of Greece if the 
Greeks would choose a king approved of by England, 
which they accordingly did. The neutrality of tie 
islands was, however,to be declared by the Great Powers 
and the fortifications of Corfu demolished, both of wliiok 
conditions were observed. 

Meanwhile things in France were hurrying to • 
crisis : Lord Palmerston watching the game, and nok 
concealing his preference for the cause of the President 

C. G. : November 20, 1861. 

My dear Normanby, — Your accounts of what is passing in 

Paris are very full and satisfactory as conveying all detail* 

Satisfactory as to details which they announce is another thing; 

But it seems to me that Louis Napoleon is master of the fiflU 


rf battle, and will carry the day. I have always thought that 
such a result would be the best thing both for France and for 
England. There is no other person at present competent to be at 
the head of affairs in France ; and if Louis Napoleon should end by 
founding a dynasty, I do not see that we need regret it, as far 
as English interests are concerned. The family of Bourbon 
have always been most hostile to England, and those members 
of that family who have owed us the greatest personal and poli- 
tical obligations have, perhaps, in their hearts hated us the 
most. "What should we gain by substituting Henry V. or the 
Orleans family for the race of Buonaparte ? At all events, I 
»y of Louis Napoleon laudo manentem. If he should fall, we 
dhould of course endeavour to be on equally good terms with 
those who, after him, might be the official organs of the French 
nation ; but we have no wish to see him fall. If success is any 
test of measures, he has not as yet played his cards ill ; and 
some of the things which he has done, and which have been repre- 
sented as mistakes, have perhaps contributed to his success. Je 
marchsy suivez-moi was certainly a good declaration, and showed 
that he knew the faintness of heart of those who were trying to 
oterfchrow him. If the Bourgraves would fairly say they want 
to re-establish a monarchy, one might wish them success ; but 
they do not seem to be ready for that, and yet they want to 
overthrow tjiat which, in the present state of affairs, seems the 
next best thing to a monarchy, and the only thing calculated to 
give any chance of order. 

During the session of 1851 Mr. Cobden renewed his 
motion, having for its object a pacific understanding 
ttnong nations, by a mutual reduction of armaments. 
Lard Palmerston took occasion in this debate to vindi- 
cate himself from the charge of being a promoter of war 
and an enemy to peace. 

He said that, however little he might think the 
method by which Mr. Cobden endeavoured to give effect 
to his principles the best calculated to attain the end he 
proposed, he subscribed implicitly to the general ten- 
dency of his views. He first, however, claimed some 
Credit for the results of his own policy. 

I trust the part it has been my lot to take in administering 
me department of the affairs of this country has shown that 
ihere has been nothing in my conduct in any degree inconsistent 


with the opinions I am now professing ; for however much it 
may be the fashion with some persons, in that easy, colloquial, 
jaunty style in which they dismiss public matters, to declaim 
against modern diplomatic and international intermeddling; 
yet at least I can appeal to facts. I can appeal to the fact that 
during the considerable period for which I have been responsible 
for the conduct of the foreign relations of this country, though 
events have happened in Europe of the most remarkable kind, 
and attended with great commotions of public feeling, and great 
agitation in the social and political system of the Continent— 
although during that period events have happened which have 
brought the interests of England, I will not say into conflict, 
but into opposition to the interests of other great and powerful 
nations, yet, at least, the fact is that we have been at peace; 
and that not only has peace been preserved between that 
country and other nations, but there has been no international 
war of magnitude between any of the other great Powers of 
Europe. If, then, on the one hand, we are taunted with per* 
petually interfering and meddling in the relations of other 
countries, we ought at least, on the other hand, to have the 
credit of the fact that that interference and intermeddling hats 
been accompanied by the continuance of peace. It is too bad 
that we should be accused, on the one hand, of interfering con- 
stantly in the transactions of other countries, and at the same 
time that we should be denied the credit of those results which « 
accompanied that course of policy. "'■ 

But now a cloud, no bigger at first than a man's 
hand, was growing on the horizon ; but, small as it was> 
it was fated to burst eventually into the Crimean War. 
So fully recorded are all the details of the dispute, of 
which Lord Palmerston notes the commencement in the 
following letter, that they need not be repeated here; ^ 
but it may be well just to recall their outline. Prance 
had in 1740 obtained from the Sultan ( capitulations r r 
securing to the Latin Church in Palestine certain privi- 
leges in connection with the Holy Shrine. Since that 
date the Greeks, supported by Eussia, had obtained 
firmans granting them advantages in derogation of 
the Latin capitulations. These firmans had been long 
acquiesced in. Suddenly, for no apparent cause, the 
French ambassador at Constantinople, M. de Lavallette, 


is instructed to demand that the grants to the Latin 
inrch should be strictly executed. This was impossible, 
ithout annulling some of the privileges of the Greek 
hurch. Einc ilke lachrymce ! — Which of the two sets 
f monks at Jerusalem should have the keys of certain 
oars ; and whether the Latins might have a cupboard 
nd a lamp in the tomb of the Virgin ! Such were the 
uestions which convulsed diplomacy on the Bosphorus, 
nd, in the opinion of the French ambassador, justified 
is threats of force. It is thus clear that the first step 
raa taken by France. 

Lord Palmerston tries a little oil for the troubled 
raters : — 

C. G. : November 25, 1851. 
My dear Normanby, — I was in hopes, from the manner in 
rhich Walewski had spoken of this Church question between 
be French and Russians in Turkey, that the French Govern- 
mt took a quieter view of it than seems to be the case. 
Falewski agreed with me that le jeu ne vaut pas la chandelle, 
nd that it would be very unwise for France in the present 
atical and unsettled state of affairs all over Europe to get 
ito a quarrel with Russia and Turkey about a matter in itself 
f such very trifling importance ; and he quite admitted that 
Avallette had gone much too far, and he seemed to agree with 
nethat this is a discussion which might prudently be adjourned, 
nd he allowed, in the Turkish fashion, to sleep till a fitter 
eaaon. As to the merits of the case, I am not able to state or 
bna an opinion, for Stratford Canning has kept studiously 
loof from the discussion, and has only from time to time 
splained the general outline of the points at issue. But the 
wad way in which you put it to the President is the just way 
look at it. Here are a few Catholics in Turkey, and many 
nillions of Greeks ; here is a colossal power close on the Sultan's 
ftek, and here is France a long way off; here are fourteen or 
ifteen Christian churches in Asia Minor, of which the greater 
lumber are in the possession of Greek Christians and the 
Dialler number in the hands of the Catholics ; and the French 
Government insists that the Sultan shall, by making a half-and- 
alf distribution of these holy places between Greeks and 
la&holics, give a division unequal as with reference to the 
dative numbers of the two Christian communities, disgust a 
irge body of his own subjects, and offend a powerful neighbour 


who can plague and annoy him in a hundred ways and 

beyond the reach of France to protect him. This 

unreasonable course to pursue, unless really the object in 

were of essential national importance; but if I Tnififadm 

there can be but very few Frenchmen locally interested ml 

matter ; the few who are in the Levant must be chiefly 

in some convents — men who have abandoned their own 

and never think of returning to it. The real object which 

President has in view must of course be to get favour with 

Catholic clergy in France; but he should seriously 

whether he is not paying too dear for that addition of fa 

from them by engaging France in a great quarrel about 

small a thing. But suppose he goes on and sends a fleet to 

Dardanelles, what is that fleet to do? It must either h 

the Dardanelles or force them and make its way up to 

stantinople, in order to give the law at the cannon's mouth 

the Seraglio point. Now a blockade of the Dardanelles i% 

course, a very easily accomplished thing. The French ~ 

would take up its position within the outer castles in 

Bay, where Parker anchored, and it could there 

prevent any vessel from going up or coming down. Bat 

maritime trade up and down those straits communicating 

the Danube, with Odessa, with Taganrog, and with TreW 

is a matter of most important interest to many nations 

Europe, and especially to us English ; and an interruption 

that trade, without any real and adequate necessity, 

raise an immense outciy against France all over Europe 

even in America, for it must be borne in mind that such 

blockade would differ essentially from blockades in 

In ordinary cases, when you blockade a port, you blockade 

port, and that port or country only; but here the hi 

would apply, not merely to Constantinople and Turkey in A^i 

but to the southern ports of Russia and to the Danube-border^ 

countries ; and if the French should find themselves obliged - " 

as probably in point of justice and international right tbfl 

would be — to let the Russian flag pass and repass, then ti* 

blockade of the Turkish ports would of course be reducrf 

to a nullity. But, supposing they were to try to force tfr 

Dardanelles, that would be an operation not to be perform* 

without much loss if attempted by ships alone. The batten* 

have been greatly strengthened of late years, and the wind and 

current downward to the Mediterranean generally expose ship* 

going upwards to long-continued fire from the land batteries* 


iey might send also a land force to disembark and take the 
A&ariee, but that would make the operation one of time. 

In the meanwhile the Russians would not be idle, and 
wehow or other they would probably contrive to send succour 
» the Sultan ; and if it should so happen that, by reason of 
ny of these obstacles and resistances the attempt should fail, 
be French Government would have lost caste in Europe and 
rould have made itself ridiculous ; and, moreover, the French 
Government would have done more than Russia unaided could 
|o in half a century to counteract and upset the policy which 
feagland and France have hitherto pursued in regard to Turkey 
•-* policy the great object of which has been to foster the 
■dependence of Turkey and to get her out of the hands and 
B&tience of the Russian Government. 

He then proceeded to offer, the mediation of Eng- 
land to compose the quarrel — not as a partisan of either 
dde, but as a sincere well-wisher to all three powers, 
md as an earnest promoter of peace on earth. But a 
few days later he finds that Russia was not in a humour 
br c good offices. 5 ! 

I see, by despatches lately received from Stratford Canning, 
that the question about the churches in the Levant is still under 
discussion and consideration at Constantinople, and that there 
eould be no pretence at present for any violent proceeding on 
the part of France. But from a little conversation I have had 
on flie subject with Brunnow, I am inclined to think that 
Russia would not be disposed to accept our good offices if they 
TOe tendered. The Turkish Government, Canning says, seems 
afcher to lean to the side of France. But really and truly this 
fe a quarrel fitter for times long gone by than for the days in 
*hich we live. 

Although after the coup d'etat at Paris the French 
pressure was violently renewed, in the meanwhile, on 
the eve of the blow and in the uncertainty of its result, 
the Turk was left free to act for himself by the tem- 
porary removal of the instrument of coercion. 

C. G. : December 1, 1851. 
My dear Canning, — Lavallette may represent his going away 
an leave of absence as a mark of the displeasure of the French 

1 To Lord Normanbj', November 28. 


Government at the conduct of the Porte on the question about 
the holy buildings, but I happen to know that he has had leave 
of absence sent him because the French Government thought 
he had gone too far, and they considered his temporary absence 
on leave as likely to be the best way of letting the question 
drop down into its proper proportions. Say nothing about this 
unless you find Reshid frightened, and then you may whisper 
it gently and secretly into his ear. 

But official mediation, though it may frequently 
succeed in modifying public demands and political 
objects, cannot equally influence personal aims and 
ambitions. After the crisis at Paris an Emperor in 
France confronted an Emperor in Eussia. The first 
had to vindicate his newly-won position in the eyes of 
Europe and of his own country. The second had fr 
long' score of checks to wipe out, which to his violent 
temperament had been most galling. It was not likely 
that under such circumstances the questions at issue 
would be allowed to drop. Before, however, they had 
ripened into a war in which England was involved, 
Lord Palmerston, as we shall now see, had been driven 
from the direction of our external affairs. 





Cassio, I love thee, 
But never more be officer of mine— Othello, Act. II, Sc. 3. 

(fa now arrive at a critical period in the lives of two 
rf the most eminent statesmen of their day. Lord John 
Etassell, from the traditional recollections of his family, 
bom the course of his own studies, and from the ten- 
dency of his own opinions, was the statesman whom the 
Liberal party of his own time most trusted in domestic 
affairs. Lord Palmerston, on the other hand, from 
long experience, decided character, and enlarged views, 
enjoyed the confidence of the same party in foreign 

Both statesmen were said to have their faults ; and 
now and then a portion of their general followers broke 
off from one or from the other. But, on the whole, 
taking each in his own specialty, there were no men in 
the country to match them ; and they had hitherto, 
though not always agreeing, stood firmly together. 
But circumstances had of late tended to dissolve this 
union. Lord John Russell, not only as Prime Minister, 
but as leader of the Liberal party, felt himself to be 
invested not only with great authority, but great re- 
sponsibility, and was not unf requently reproached by 
some of his colleagues, who, without considering our 
foreign policy in its general aspect, were prone to criti- 
cise its details, for allowing the Foreign Office too much 

1 To Lord Normanby, November 28. 


independence. On the other hand, Lord Palmerston, 
who had acquired a complete mastery over the business 
of his department, who always acted on a thorough con- 
viction that his views were undeniably right, and who 
refrained from any interference in the internal policy of 
the country, was disposed to think that very great lati- 
tude within the sphere of his own attributes should be 
allowed to him. His notion was that a Foreign Minister 
ought to be strictly bound to pursue the policy of the 
Cabinet he belonged to, but that he ought to be left 
free to follow out that policy in the ordinary details of 
his office, without having every despatch he wrote suh 
mitted to criticism and comment. There is this, more- 
over, to be said, that whereas in home affairs nothing 
important is done without the decision of a Cabinet, 
and the leader in Parliament has only to explain the 
resolutions of the Cabinet, in foreign affairs a Minister 
is called upon every day of the week and at any time to 
write and speak to foreign Governments, or their re* 
presentatives, on current business. If he could not do 
this with a certain degree of promptitude and freedom, 
he would lose all weight and influence with his own 
agents and with the agents of other Powers. 

If, then, there is to be a Minister of Foreign Affaire 
fit for his post, he must have the thorough confidence 
of the Premier, and act as if he had it. 

Lord Palmerston especially required this ; first, 
because he held an important post in a Whig Cabinet^ 
not being a Whig ; and, second, because his policy— 
that of constantly maintaining the dignity, power, and 
prestige of England unimpaired — was not only one of 
constant attention, but, necessarily, of constant action. 

Nor was this all : Lord Palmerston 'had not merely 
to satisfy Lord John Eussell, he had also to satisfy the 
Sovereign under whom Lord John held his appointment 
Foreign policy is that policy in which Sovereigns, who 
are thus brought into competition with their equals, 
take the most interest. The Prince Consort, with whom 
Her Majesty lived on such terms of confidence as ren- 


[ her application to him on questions of importance 
tter of course, was not only a Prince of considerable 
j 9 but one who gave a minute and scrupulous 
burn to any business on which he was consulted, 
as naturally slow and cautious of judgment ; and 
igh his opinions were conscientiously and entirely 
ed towards English objects, he had not entirely 
iglish mind ; and in a German gentleman (Baron 
mar) much in his confidence, and who deserved, 
his great knowledge and abilities, to be so, he had 
iviser a man who, though well qualified to have 
a place amongst the first statesmen in Europe, 
dearly no admirer of popular or Parliamentary 
)1 over foreign affairs, which he regarded as the 
1 concerns of royal and imperial minds, 
efficient has thus been said to show that the royal 
rity was likely to be exercised in our foreign 
ins, and that the decided views which Lord 
arston was accustomed to form or be disposed at 
to carry out, and the strength of the language 
tch he often embodied those views, jarred at times 
the disposition towards more consideration and 
ration at Windsor. More caution, more delibera- 
nras required of him; and, in fact, Lord John 
ill, with a double view, I am quite ready to sup- 
of paying due deference to the Crown and of 
ig his colleague, made Lord Palmerston a coni- 
zation in 1850 to this effect. Such restrictions 
not be agreeable to the person on whom they 
imposed, and, though conformable with the spirit 
p Constitution, were hardly compatible with the 
)t and practical despatch of business which every 
r as complicating and increasing, and which fine- 
ly required for a successful issue the transmitting 
immediate reply. During the discussions about 
)anish. marriages Lord Palmerston lost three weeks 
iwering a communication from Guizot, by having 
id drafts backwards and forwards while the Court 
aoving about in a cruize on the Western Coast* 



Guizot, in his subsequent notes and despatches, wai 
always throwing this delay in his face ; but his tongtu 
was tied, and he was obliged to accept the rebuke in 

It is not necessary to discuss here the exact consti- 
tutional position of the Crown in these matters, because 
that was not really at issue on the occasion to which 
reference is about to be made. It will suffice to em- 
phatically repudiate the doctrine which has been re- 
cently approved in certain anonymous quarters, that 
the Head of the State is entrusted in a special manner 
with the decisions upon foreign affairs, and to claim 
for a free people a voice in their foreign equally ai 
in their domestic concerns. But much has also been 
said and written lately about the share which the 
Sovereign takes, or ought to take, in the daily conduct 
of our foreign negotiations. The truth is that, with a 
pliant minister and under ordinary circumstances, the 
Crown has very great opportunities for impressing upon 
foreign affairs that tone and direction which it, for 
the moment, desires. Even when an important differ- 
ence between Crown and Cabinet on a question of 
general policy has disappeared, by the former yielding 
to the representations of the latter, there still -remain 
to the Sovereign many ways of influencing the course 
of negotiations in accordance with his original view* 
Draft despatches, embodying the Cabinet policy, mult 
be sent to him for approval. They may be returned 
accompanied by objections to such and such passage!, 
as not fairly representing the decisions arrived at— 
by complaints of one paragraph as being too strong- 
while another is pronounced too weak. The Cabinet 
may be scattered, as, indeed, it always is during a pop* 
tion of the year ; or, if all its members are at hand, still 
the occasion may not be deemed by the Prime Minister 
and the Foreign Secretary sufficiently grave to warrant 
the issue of a summons. The peccant paragraphs, are 
accordingly recast and a doubtful instead of a clear and 
strong expression of opinion or intention is transmitted 


e foreign Court. Nor is this all : the Secretary of 
i, in such a supposed case, knows when preparing 
raft that it is about to be submitted to a hostile 
— hostile, I mean, in the sense of being adverse 
le policy of which he is the exponent — a critic 
aver who must be heard and answered, not one 
3an be met by real or simulated indifference. He 
s, therefore, insensibly by a compromise, and pre- 
, subject to further modification, an already mo- 
. version of the views of his Government. How 
an influence may be exercised by means of this 
rship will be evident to any person conversant 
diplomatic language, and therefore aware of the 
rtant difference which even a slight alteration may 



ow, it is not contended that, on the whole, within 
roper limits, the existence of this warning and 
ising power, outside of party ranks, is otherwise 
beneficial — especially as a good Secretary of State 
oreign Affairs is one of the rarest of our various 
sal species. It is, however, certain that to Lord 
srston, conscious of his knowledge and patriotism, 
st and eager in his aims, and thoroughly confident 
lis ways of attaining the end proposed were the 
;, the delays and obstacles not unfrequently thus 
1 in his way were most irksome; and in the ardour 
) chase he was too often tempted to leap the gate 
r than lose the time necessary to stop and open 
t must also be remembered that he had, off and 
*ld the seals of the Foreign Office for a long term 
rs, during the greater part of which he had been 
bomed to be left very much alone. He was, in- 
already a veteran in foreign administration at the 
vhen his two able German critics first appeared 
e scene. But, whatever opinion mav be formed 
his independence and promptness of action, his 
33 at any rate must be admired, and it is not pos- 
or anybody who was acquainted with his character 
the it with any colour of disrespect for the Crown. 


There had, however, been friction — and its natura 
effects, though as yet latent, were undoubtedly stil 
at work, when there suddenly occurred a new anc 
important phase in the neighbouring kingdom. Prince 
Louis Napoleon, who had been elected President of the 
French Bepublic, was in a position that threatened new 
and serious complications in that country, remarkable, 
during the last hundred years, for its vicissitudes. This 
Prince, at the time of his election, did not pass in Eng- 
land, where he then resided, for having any superior 
ability, nor, as it has been said, had he acquired such 
a reputation with leading men in France. None had 
been willing to connect their fates with his. M. Odillon 
Barrot and M. de Tocqueville were the only two men of 
any reputation who had served under him, and both of 
these told their friends that it would be impossible to 
serve him long, because they knew they could not 
satisfy his ambition. M. de Tocqueville had been 
willing to make a compromise, and would have conceded 
the presidency for life, and a revenue, say, for that 
position, though inferior, doubtless, to the civil list of 
an emperor. 

The Prince himself had, possibly, at first no fixed 
idea but that of governing France with as much power 
as it would accord him. That which, according to report, 
was said of him by his cousin at the time of his greatest 
prestige is probably near the truth. ' For ft time tiie 
world thought my cousin an idiot ; now they think him 
a genius. He was not an idiot, and is not a genius/ 
He was not a great man, but he had a fair idea of what 
a great man should be ; and he could in certain situa- 
tions play the part of one. But, at all events, his 
talents, whatever they were, had no clear development 
in any visible direction. His conversation, simple and 
natural, was in no wise striking. He could not sustain 
an argument ; and his written composition, which was 
certainly remarkable, appeared so much above the 
capacity he had otherwise evinced that he did not get 
credit for it. His unsuccessful attempts to make in- 


etion during the reign of Louis Philippe had 
ed too high an opinion of his spirit of enterprise, 

00 low a one of his intellect. 

one or few of the thinking classes then either in 
ye or England considered his reign otherwise than 
neral; and the longer his power continued, the 
impatient those who thought they could cut it 
when they pleased became of it. This impatience 
f late visibly increased. The Assembly had boldly 
self up as his rival, and he had at last found it 
usible to name a Parliamentary Ministry. 
>rd Palmerston, as far back as January 24, in a 
to Lord Normanby, had given his views of what 
Napoleon's course should be in such a contingency, 
rote: — 

1 was the President I should not trouble myself as to 
9r the Assembly supported my Ministers or not, whether 
insured or approved them. I should say to the Assembly 
ot get rid of you and you cannot get rid of me, and your 
es do not change my opinions of my own conduct. For 
mduct I am not answerable to you (as long as I keep 

the law), but to France. My Ministers are acting by 
itructions, and they are responsible to me and not to you. 

reject good laws which I propose to you, yours be the 

If you will not vote money to keep up an army, navy, 

vil government, let the nation call you to account for 

straying your country ; but that which I will not do is 

oint Ministers who shall be your instruments and not 

e analogy of our Constitution in regard to the relation of 
ers to Parliament and to the Crown does not hold good 
tie position of the French Ministers. The Constitutions 
two countries are wholly different. 

ie Assembly met after the recess in November of 
The crisis arrived on December 2, when the 
g members of the Opposition were arrested in 
beds, and a purely military rule was established 
lg an appeal to universal suffrage as to the future 
lment of France. 


On December 8, Count Walewski, the French am* 
bassador, called upon Lord Palmerston to inform him 
of what had taken place, and in the course of conver- 
sation Lord Palmerston expressed the view which he 
held as to the necessity and advantage for France and 
Europe of the bold and decisive step taken by the 

The following Memorandum, written several years- 
later, shows that he was well aware what was going 
on at this moment in England as well as in France 
among those who were seeking to cut short Napoleon's- 
term of power : — 

Memorandum of certain, CvrcwniBtances connected with the 

Coup d'etat. 

The coup d'etat took place on Tuesday, December 2, 1851,. 
and was known in London by the next day. On Wednesday, 

the 3rd, Mr. and Mrs. dined with us in Carlton Gardens, 

and told me that they had been down to Claremont on the* 
preceding Friday to visit the Queen Amelie ; that they found 
the ladies of the French Court in a great bustle ; and that they 

told Mrs. as a great secret that they were making up their 

paquets, as they expected to have to go to Paris at the end of 
the then next week, that is to say, at the end of the week in 
which the coup d!Uat took place. 

On the Sunday following, that is to say, on December 7, 
Mr. Borthwick, editor of the ' Morning Post/ came to me. He- 
said he had a communication to make to me which it might be 
important for me to receive, and which he considered himself 
at liberty to make. He said that the day before, that is, on 
Saturday the 6th, General de Rumigny, attached to the French 
Court, had come to him and said that as he, Mr. Borthwick, 
had been civil and attentive to the ex-Royal Family, he (General 
Rumigny) had been desired to say to him that, if it would be> 
useful to his paper, he should have daily accounts of the mili- 
tary operations that were about to commence in the north of 
France ; that the Prince de Joinville and the Due d'Aumale 
were gone to Lille to take the command of troops to act against 
the President ; that the Royal Family had endeavoured to dia- 
8uade the Prince de Joinville from this step, but in vain ; and 
that, finding him determined on doing so, the Due d'Aumale 
had said, ' My brother is a sailor, he knows nothing of military 


Iterations ; I am a soldier, I will go with him and share his. 
ifce and fortune/ Mr. Borthwick said he had declined the 
ffered communications, as he did not wish his paper to be 
considered the organ of the Orleans family ; and as the com- 
munication had not been made to him under the condition of 
secrecy, he came at once to tell me of it. 

I immediately wrote to Sir George Grey, then Home 
Secretary, to ask him to make inquiry through the detach- 
ment of police stationed at Claremont for the protection of the 
ex-Royal Family, to know whether all the French princes were 
there, that is to say, those who were in England. I said that 
General de Rumigny or Borthwick must have made a mistake 
in naming D'Aumale, because he was then at Naples, and it 
urast be the Due de Nemours who had gone with Joinville. 

In the course of the afternoon I received from Sir G. Grey 
a report that both Nemours and Joinville were still at Clare- 
mont. That Joinville had been several times in London in the- 
couree of this week, and was that day at Claremont. That 
Joinville had been very ill for several days, and had been con- 
fined to his room, and nobody had seen him but his medical 
attendant, who visited him twice a day. This report at once- 
showed that Joinville was off, as I afterwards heard was the 
ease. He went as far as Ostend, but found that the attempt 
would not succeed, and he came back again. I believe the 
garrison of Lille had been changed. This confirmed the story 
as to Joinville, but left unexplained the statement as to 
D'Aumale. But some days afterwards I received a letter 
fean my brother, Minister at Naples, written before the news 
of the coup d'etat had reached Naples, saying that the Due and 
Dnchesse d'Aumale had received alarming accounts of the 
health of the ex-Queen of France, and that in consequence 
thereof the Duke had suddenly set off for England. That two 
days afterwards the Duchesse d'Aumale had received better 
accounts, and she regretted that her husband had not waited a 
day or two longer, as he would then have been spared a fatiguing 
journey in the depth of winter. 

This statement confirmed the whole of General de Rumigny V 
story, for D'Aumale had evidently, by preconcerted arrange- 
ment, left Naples to meet Joinville on a given day at a given 
place ; and this proved that there had been a plot long proposed 
for an attack upon the President. 

About a fortnight or three weeks afterwards Count Lav- 
fedio, the Portuguese Minister in London, went to Claremont. 


to visit the Princesse de Joinville, who is a Brazilian, and h 
said he found her toute eplorie at the turn of affairs in France 
and that she said it was most afflicting : et pour moi qui devci 
We a Paris le 20 ! 

All this clearly proves that if the President had not struck 
when he did, he would himself have been knocked over. 

P., 29-9, 185a 

On the same day as his conversation with Count 
Walewski Lord Palmerston wrote privately to Lori 
Normanby as follows : — 

C. G. : December 3, 1861. 
Even we here, who cannot be supposed to know as much ai 
people at Paris did about what was going on among the Boor- 
bonists, cannot be surprised that Louis Napoleon struck the 
blow at the time which he chose for it ; for it is now weD 
known here that the Duchess of Orleans was preparing to be 
called to Paris this week with her younger son to commence a 
new period of Orleans dynasty. Of course the President got 
an inkling of what was passing, and, if it is true, as stated in 
our newspapers, that Cliangarnier was arrested at four o'clock 
in the morning in council with Thiers and others, there seem 
good reason to believe, what is also asserted, that the Burgraves ' 
had a stroke prepared which was to be struck against tbl 
President that very day, and that, consequently, he acted OB 
the principle that a good thrust is often the best parry. I 
have reason to think, because I have heard it from seven! 
quarters, that the President has been sometimes led to infer, 
from your social intimacy with the Burgrave party, that yon 
political sympathies were more directed towards them than 
towards him. Of course a Minister or Ambassador cannot bi 
expected to adapt his social relations to the party jealousies d 
the Government to which he is accredited, but if it so happen! 
that personal friendships and private and social intimacies lead 
him into frequent communication with persons who are hoetfll 
to the Government, it is the more necessary for him to tafa 
care to destroy in the mind of the Government any misappre- 
hension which this circumstance might give rise to ; and 1 
have no doubt that you have been careful to do so. As U 

1 The majority, comprising Thiers, Tocqueville, Odillon Barret* aal 
others, in the Assembly. It was a nickname, taken from the title of I 
play by Victor Hugo, in which a similar party was represented. 


respect for the law and Constitution, which you say in your 

despatch of yesterday is habitual to Englishmen, that respect 

belongs to just and equitable laws framed under a Constitution 

iounded upon reason, and consecrated by its antiquity and by 

the memory of the long years of happiness which the nation 

las enjoyed under it; but it is scarcely a proper application of 

"those feeelings to require them to be directed to the day-before- 

yesterday tomfoolery which the scatter-brained heads of Marrast 

and Tocqueville invented for the torment and perplexity of the 

HVench nation; and I must say that that Constitution was 

more honoured by the breach than the observance. 

It was high time to get rid of such childish nonsense ; and 
as the Assembly seemed to be resolved that it should not be 

fb rid of quietly and by deliberate alteration and amendment, 
do not wonder that the President determined to get rid of 
1hem as obstacles to all rational arrangement. 

If, indeed, as we suppose, they meant to strike a sudden 
'Wow at him, he was quite right on that ground also to knock 
"them down first. 

. I find I have written on two sheets by mistake ; the blank 
larf is an appropriate emblem of the present state of the French 
Constitution. It is curious that such a nation as the French, 
after more than sixty years of political struggle and iive revo- 
lutions—counting the assumption of power by Napoleon as 
'One — should at last have arrived at a point where all Constitu- 
1ion is swept away, and where they are going to give a practical 
«xample of that original compact between the people and the 
safer which is generally considered as an imaginary illustration 
<f a fanciful theory. 

One of Lord Palmerston's difficulties was the ill- 
disguised hostility of the British ambassador to the 
Irench President, which Lord Palmerston had to re- 
•%oke in terms which were naturally distasteful to Lord 
Bbrmanby. The Government, indeed, at the request 
<rf the President, were obliged to recall him shortly 

Count Walewski very naturally communicated at 
once to the French Foreign Office the tenor of what 
Lord Palmerston had said to him. Meanwhile Lord 
Hormanby had applied for instructions as to his future 
conduct, and received the following official reply : — 


Foreign Office : December 6, 1851. 
My Lord, — I have received and laid before the Queen yom 
Excellency's despatch of the 3rd instant, requesting to be fur- 
nished with instructions for your guidance in the present state 
of affairs in France. 

I am commanded by Her Majesty to instruct your Ex- 
cellency to make no change in your relations with the French 

It is Her Majesty's desire that nothing should be done bf 
her Ambassador at Paris which could wear the appearance rf 
an interference of any kind in the internal affairs of France. 

I am, (fee, 


Lord Normanby hastened to the French Minister 
for Foreign Affairs in order to communicate to him the 
tenor of this despatch. M. Turgot, who had been 
piqued, as Louis Napoleon himself had been, at the 
hostile language held by the English representative, 
replied tartly that such a communication was unneces* 
sary, as M. Walewski had already informed him that 
Lord Palmerston entirely approved of what the Presi- 
dent had done. This statement Lord Normanby re- 
ported home in the following despatches, to which I 
append two side-notes which appear in Lord Palmer- 
ston's handwriting, and his despatch of December 16* 
pointing out the unreasonable character of Lord Nor- 
manby's complaints : — 

Paris : December 6, 1851. 

My Lord, — I this morning received your Lordship's despatch 

of yesterday's date, and I afterwards called on M. Turgot, and 

informed him that I had received Her Majesty's command id 

say that I need make no change in my relation! 

"°* with the French Government in consequence d 
what had passed. I added that if there had been some litfll 
delay in making this communication, it arose from some mate* 
rial circumstances not connected with any doubt on the subject 

M. Turgot said that delay had been of less importance 
as he had two days since heard from M. Walewski that yonl 
lordship had expressed to him your entire approbation of till 
act of the President, and ycur conviction that he could not 
have acted otherwise than he had done. I said I had DC 


knowledge of any such communication, and no instructions 
wyond our invariable rule to do nothing which should have 
&e appearance of interfering in any way in the interna] affairs 
of Prance, but that I had often had an opportunity of showing, 
under very varied circumstances, that whatever might be the 
■Government here, I attached the utmost importance to main- 
taining the most amicable relations between the two countries. 
I added that I was sure, had the Government known of the 
suppression of the insurrection of the Rouges at the time I had 
leard from them, I should have been commissioned to add their 
•congratulations to mine. 

I have thought it necessary to mention what was stated 
About M. Walewski's despatch because two of my colleagues 
kre mentioned to me that the despatch containing expressions 
jrecisely to that effect had been read to them in order to show 
Hie decided opinion which England had pronounced. 

I have, <fcc., 


Paris : December 15, 1851. 

My Lord, — In my despatch of the 6th instant, notifying my 
<ommunication of my instructions to M. Turgot, I reported 
tfcat his Excellency had mentioned that M. Walewski had 
Trritten a despatch in which he stated that your Lordship had 
_ expressed your complete approbation of the course 

Hfement taken by the President in the recent coup d'Hat. 
JS Lfa I <d*o reported that I had conveyed to M. Turgot 
my belief that there must he sows mistake in this 
Statement, and my reasons for that belief. 

Bat as a week has now elapsed without any explanation 
fam your Lordship on this point, I must conclude M. Walew- 
•kfs report to have been substantially correct. 

That being the case, I am perfectly aware that it is beyond 
fte sphere of my present duties to make any remark upon 
"fte acts of your Lordship, except inasmuch as they affect my 
own position. But within these limits I must, with due 
Reference, be permitted to observe, that if your Lordship, as 
Foreign Minister, holds one language on such a delicate point 
m Downing Street, without giving me any intimation you had 
4one so — prescribing afterwards a different course to me, 
ttunely, the avoidance of any appearance of interference of 
«ny kind in the internal affairs of France — I am placed thereby 
i> a very awkward position. 


If the language held in Downing Street is more favourable 
to the existing order of things in France than the instructions 
on which I am directed to guide myself upon the spot, it must 
be obvious that by that act of your Lordship's I become subject 
to misrepresentation and suspicion in merely doing my duty 
according to the official orders received through your Lordship 
from Her Majesty. 

All this is of more importance to me, because, as I stated 
before, several of my diplomatic colleagues had had the despatch 
read to them, and had derived from it the conviction that, if 
accurately reported, your expressions had been those of un- 
qualified satisfaction. 

I have, <fec., 


Foreign Office : December 16, 1851. 

My Lord, — I have received your Excellency's despatch of 
the 15th instant, referring to the statement made to you by the 
French Minister for Foreign Affairs on the occasion of your 
communicating to his Excellency the instructions with which 
you have been furnished by Her Majesty's Government for 
your guidance in the present state of affairs in France, and I 
have to state to your Excellency that there has been nothing, 
in the language which I have held, nor in the opinions which I 
have at any time expressed on the recent events in France, 
which has been in any way inconsistent with the instruction* 
addressed to your Excellency, to abstain from anything which- 
could bear the appearance of any interference in the internal 
affairs of France. The instructions contained in my despatcL 
of the 5th instant, to which your Excellency refers, were sent 
to you, not in reply to a question as to what opinions your 
Excellency should express, but in reply to a question which I 
understood to be, whether your Excellency should continue 
your usual diplomatic relations with the President during &» 
interval which was to elapse between the date of your Excel- 
lency's despatch of the 3rd instant and the voting by th> 
French nation on the question to be proposed to them by thex 

As to approving or condemning the step taken by the 
President in dissolving the Assembly, I conceive that it ilk 
for the French nation, and not for the British Secretary of 
State or for the British Ambassador, to pronounce judgment 
upon that event ; but if your Excellency wishes to know my 


wn opinion on the change which has taken place in France, it 
s that such a state of antagonism had arisen between the 
President and the Assembly that it was becoming every day 
more clear that their co-existence could not be of long duration ; 
tod it seemed to me better for the interests of France, and, 
through them, for the interests of the rest of Europe, that the 
power of the President should prevail, inasmuch as the con- 
■fcraance of his authority might afford a prospect of the main- 
tenance of social order in France, whereas the divisions of 
opinions and parties in the Assembly appeared to betoken that 
their victory over the President would only be the starting- 
point for disastrous civil strife. 

Whether my opinion was right or wrong, it seems to be 
Aared by persons interested in property in France, as far at 
least as the great and sudden rise in the Funds and in other 
investments may be assumed to be indications of increasing 
wnfidence in the improved prospect of internal tranquillity in 

I am, <fcc, 


These despatches, however, of the English am- 
litt&dor came in due course before the Queen and the 
Render; and Lord John Russell, on the 14th, called 
fte Foreign Secretary to account for what he appeared 
tjohave said in the matter. Lord Palmerston answered 
% a detailed exposition of his view of the whole 
Air, and gave the grounds on which he had formed 
Kb opinion. 

Carlton Gardens : December 16, 1851. 
. My dear John Russell, — I return you the Queen's Memo- 
taitmi and the despatch from Normanby to which it relates. 
«fcaay that I expressed entire approbation of what the Presi- 
fat had done, and that I stated my conviction that he could 
lot have acted otherwise than he had done, is giving a high 
aloming to anything that I may have said to Count Walewski 
to the 3rd instant, the date, apparently, of his despatch to 
Minis. Turgot ; but it must be borne in mind that Normanby 
•rites his recollections of what Mons. Turgot said to him; 
iat Mons. Turgot spoke to him, apparently somewhat piqued 
t the delay of his communication, and also from recollection, 
od that it was natural that Count Walewski in writing his 



despatch should colour highly what anybody about whom he 
wrote had said to him on the events of the preceding day. 
But the opinion which I entertain of this grave and important 
matter, and which, no doubt, I expressed is, that so decided 
an antagonism had grown up between the President and the 
Assembly that it was to be foreseen that they could not long 
coexist, and that each was planning the overthrow of the other 
—either meaning aggression or believing that their course wat 
only self-defence : there are circumstances which seem to 
countenance the supposition that the Assembly intended in 
the course of that very week to have struck a blow at the 
President, and to have deprived him of his position. Now, ai 
between the President and the Assembly it seems to me that 
the interests of France, and, through them, the interests of the 
rest of Europe, were better consulted by the prevalence of thi 
President than they would have been by the prevalence of the 
Assembly ; and the great rise which had taken place in the 
French Funds from 91 to 102, together with the sudden spring 
which has been made by commerce in general, seem to show 
that the French people in general are of the same opinion, and 
that what has happened has inspired the nation with a feeling 
of confidence which they had not before. 

Indeed, to account for this we have only to look at what 
.each of the two parties offered to France as the result of their 
victory over the other party." The President had to offer unity* 
of authority and of purpose and the support of the whole armf 
ugainst the anarchists for the maintenance of order. Ha» 
Assembly had to offer immediate division among themselves 
a division in the army, and, in all probability, civil war, during 
which the anarchists would have had immense opportunitae* 
and facilities for carrying their desolating schemes into execu- 
tion. If the Assembly had had any acceptable ruler to propoflB 
to the nation instead of Louis Napoleon they might, with thebi 
opinions and preferences, have been acting as true patriots bjp 
overthrowing the President. But there were scarcely mor* 
than three alternatives which they could have proposed. Firtfcj 
Henry V., who represents the principle of Legitimacy, and wh* 
has a devoted and a considerable party in France ; but that parQ 
is still a minority of the nation, and a minority cannot govert 
the majority. Secondly, they might have proposed the Com** 
de Paris, but he is only about twelve years old ; and a a£3 
years' minority with a regency, and with Thiers as the Prifl* 
^Minister, was not a proposition which a nation in the state t> 


vttch the French are was at all likely to accept. Thirdly, 
fey might have offered the Prince de Joinville as a President, 
• three of the generals as a commission of government, hut 
wither of these arrangements would have been acceptable to 
In whole nation. The success, then, of the Assembly would, 
kill human probability, have been civil war, while the success 
if the President promised the re-establishment of order. 

This bitter antagonism between the President and the 
i laembly was partly the consequence of the arrangements of 
1818, and partly the result of faults on both sides, but chiefly 
[ at the side of the Assembly. 

► It may safely be affirmed that a long duration of a cen- 
t Wised, as contradistinguished from a Federal Republic, in a 
Utat country like France, with a large standing army, and the 
Mtf of government not in an unimportant place like Washing- 
ton, but in a great capital which exercises almost paramount 
faftuence over the whole country, is a political impossibility, 
let the arrangement of such a Republic be ever so well or so 
wisely constructed. 

But the arrangements of 1848 greatly increased that general 

impossibility, and, indeed, the work of Messrs. Marrast and 

Tocqueville would more properly be called a dissolution than a 

t Constitution, for they brought the political organisation of 

[ lance to the very brink of anarchy. 

Not to more than mention, among other defects, that there 
were two great Powers, each deriving its existence from the 
ftme source, almost sure to disagree, but with no umpire to 
icide between them, and neither able by any legal means to 
[frtridof the other — not to dwell upon that, the question in 
[■gard to which the rupture took place was sure to bring about 
teoner or later collision, and probably violence. 

The Constitution contained a regulation that the same per- 
i should not be twice running elected as President ; that is 
! to say, that at the end of the first and of each successive term 
>tf Presidentship the French nation should not be allowed to 
►Aooee the person whom they might prefer and think fittest to 
ffcat the head of their Government. Now, there seemed every 
~~ Q to expect that the vast majority of the nation would re- 
Louis Napoleon, and the great majority of the Conseils- 
rax petitioned that the Constitution might be altered, 
w specifically in this respect. But another regulation of 
1848 interfered. A certain proportion of the Assembly was 
Inquired to give validity to a resolution that the Constitution 
YOL. ii. P 


should be revised, and this majority the Assembly did not giv 
It had been generally expected that the actual conflict would 1 
put off till May of next year, but the measures of both parfcze 
brought it on sooner. 

The proposal of the President to restore universal suffrage 
was evidently intended for the purpose of securing for him such 
an overwhelming number of votes, that the Assembly wonM 
not have set his election aside. The Assembly tried to parrj 
this by various schemes, either projected or actually put for 
ward. One plan was a law attaching punishment to any electa 
who might vote for an ineligible candidate ; but this, I believe, 
was not actually brought forward. Another was what wai 
called the Questeur proposal, which went to place a portion d 
the army under the orders of the Assembly. This, indeed, wm 
negatived, but it showed what its proposers intended. Thoo 
came the proposal to declare it high treason in an existing 
President to take any steps to procure his re-election — a lai 
which, if it had passed, would obviously have placed the Pre* 
dent at the mercy of the Assembly, unless he could rely upoi 
a sufficient portion of the army to fight against that part of il 
which might go over to the Assembly. It is said, with whal 
truth I cannot tell, that it was the intention of the leaders d 
the majority of the Assembly, if that law had been carried 
immediately to have arrested within the walls and on the spot 
such of the Ministers as were members, among whom was the 
Minister of War, and to have also endeavoured to send ti* 
President to Yincennes, so far as I know ; at least it was toU 
to me on the Tuesday or Wednesday that those who were abort 
the Royal Family at Claremont expected something which thej 
considered favourable to their interests to happen at Bu» 
before the end of that week. I mean that this expectation hd 
been expressed in the course of the week preceding the 2nd d 
this month. 

It seems to me, then, it is fair to suppose that Louis Napo» 
leon may have acted from mixed motives. There is no doubt 
that he was impelled by ambition, and by a rooted belief which 
he is well known to have entertained from a very early ftp 
that he was destined to govern France. But he may also have 
felt that, in the present deplorable state of society in France, 
he was much more capable of promoting the interests of till 
country than his antagonists were ; and a man even with lei 
personal ambition might, in his situation, have thought iflhl 
BeipubliccB tuprema lex. 


His justification will, no doubt, very much depend upon the 

degree of proof which he may be able to adduce that he was 

acting at the moment in self-defence, and was only anticipating 

• an impending blow, and also upon the use which he may make 

of the ascendancy which he has acquired. 

I do not agree with the opinion which I understand Macau- 
lay has expressed in a letter to Lord Mahon, that the French 
nation are only fit for military despotism ; nor can I believe 
that any Government which is not what we mean by the term 
Constitutional, can have a long duration in France. 

I have said nothing of the events of Thursday and Friday, 
hot there can be but one feeling as to the wanton destruction 
of life which the soldiers appeared to have inflicted on the 
people of Paris. 

To this came a reply that the question at issue, was 
not the grounds for the judgment he had formed, but 
whether he ought to have given any opinion without 
previously consulting the Cabinet and taking the orders 
of the Sovereign. Lord Palnierston rejoined that the 
opinion given by him was given as his own and in an 
unofficial conversation, and that it in no way fettered 
fte action of the Government; that if it were laid 
<fown that a Secretary of State was to express no 
opinion on passing events in conversing with foreign 
Ministers, except as the organ of a previously-consulted 
Cabinet, there would be an end of that easy and familiar 
personal intercourse which is so useful for the mainte- 
nance of friendly relations with foreign Governments. 
this did not satisfy the Premier, who, in the following 
letter, ended the debate by a very summary decision : — 

Woburn Abbey : Dec. 19, 1851. 
My dear Palmerston, — I have just received your letter of 
yesterday. No other course is left to me than to submit the 
Jorrespondence to the Queen, and to ask Her Majesty to appoint 
i successor to you in the Foreign Office. 

Although I have often had the misfortune to differ from 
tqh in minor questions, I am deeply convinced that the policy 
rhich has been pursued has maintained the interests and the 
tonour of the country. 

I remain, yours truly, 

J. Russell. 


To soften the blow, however, he immediately after 
wards made a proposal almost comical in its character, 
and offered to Lord Palmerston the viceregal dignity at 
the Court across the Irish Channel. This was of course 
civilly declined, but the retort which such a communi- 
cation afforded to one who had been charged with con- 
duct both imprudent and indecorous was too good to 
be neglected, 

Broadlands : Dec. 23, 1851. 
My dear John Russell, — I have received your letter of yes- 
terday ; I cannot, however, allow our correspondence on this 
matter to close without saying that I do not admit your chaige 
of violations of prudence and decorum, and I have to observe 
that that charge is refuted by the offer which you made me of 
the Lord Lieutenancy of Ireland, because I apprehend that to 
be an office for the due performance of the duties of which pru- 
dence and decorum are qualities which cannot well be dispensed 

That the dismissal of Lord Palmerston sooner or 
later was an event which had been long contemplated, 
is evident from the following letter of the Prince Consort 
to the Prime Minister published in Martin's ' Life of the 
Prince Consort,' vol. ii. p. 418 : — 

Windsor Castle : Dec. 20, 1851. 
My dear Lord John, — . . . It was quite clear to the Queen 
that we were entering upon most dangerous times, in which 
military despotism and red republicanism will for some time be ^ 
the only powers on the Continent, to both of which the constat* i 
tional monarchy of England will be equally hateful. That the 
calm influence of our institutions, however, should succeed in a* 
suaging the contest abroad must be the anxious wish of every 
Englishman, and of every friend of liberty and progressive 
civilisation. This influence has been rendered null by Lord 
Palmerston's personal manner of conducting the foreign af&H 
and by the universal hatred which he has excited on the Conti- 
nent. That you could hope to control him has long been 
doubted by us, and its impossibility is clearly proved by the 
last proceedings. / can therefore only congratulate you, that 
the opportunity of the rupture should have been one in which alt 
the right is on your side. 


The Cabinet was summoned on the 22nd to receive 
the news of Lord Palmerston's dismissal and the 
appointment of Lord Granville in his stead. Lord 
Palmerston, meanwhile, was silent except to his most 
intimate Mends, for, as he said to Lord Broughton, 
'When a man resigns, he is expected to say why; when 
lie is removed, it is for others to assign reasons. 9 

But no reason was assigned and the public had to 
wait for the meeting of Parliament. Meanwhile the 
fong-cherished hostility of certain foreign Courts and 
Governments found vent in notes of exultation at the 
611 of the man who had so long occupied a position of 
antagonism towards them. All over Europe the result 
was regarded as a triumph for the absolute and a blow 
for the Liberal cause. 

From the British embassy at Vienna, Mr. Murray 
wrote to a Mend : — 

Lord Palmerston's retirement is received with the most 
profound regret by the Liberal party in Austria, who look 
Qpon it as the utter annihilation of their hopes. It will hardly 
be believed that these arrogant fools here actually think that 
#ey have overthrown Lord Palmerston ; and the vulgar triumph 
of Schwarzenberg knows no bounds. Not content with pla- 
carding the news with lying comments of all sorts, and des- 
patching couriers into the provinces to circulate the most mon- 
strous fictions about the ' Victory of Austrian Policy/ his bad 
taste has actually gone far enough to make him give a ball in 
DODsequence. I believe if an earthquake had swallowed up 
England, Queen, Lords and Commons, Constitution, Free Press 
i&d all, it would not have created more sensation than this 
mdden and strange change in the English Cabinet. 

We mnst recall the German doggrel, in vogue at 
Hie time, if we wish to understand the excited feelings 
rf the moment : — 

Hat der Teuf el einen Sohn, 
So ist er sicher Palmerston. 

Some mad enthusiasm might be forgiven at the pro- 
ipect of getting rid of the devil's son ! 


From Madrid Lord Howden at once sent in hi 
resignation to Lord Granville, alleging that he couh 
no longer be of any use there, as ' the retirement o 
Lord Palmerston either actually is, or most certainlj 
will be, believed to be a direct concession to the re- 
actionary spirit which is riding rough-shod over the 
world, and which is nowhere more to be apprehended 
than in Spain. 9 

It was the same everywhere abroad. 

At home the feeling of astonishment overcame for 
the moment every other feeling : an astonishment not 
confined to the general public, but extending even to 
some of his colleagues. Lord Palmerston received 
letters from all sides expressing regret and asking for 
explanation. He contented himself with acknowledg- 
ing their sympathetic communications. I shall only 
quote one letter addressed to him on the subject, and 
that is one from Lord Lansdowne : — 

Bowood: December 20. 

My dear Palmerston, — I cannot resist the desire I feel to 
write to you, and give some expression to the deep concern I 
feel at the event which has just occurred, of the probability of 
which I was only made aware the day before the last Cabinet, 
by two letters from J. Russell, which, owing to the accident of 
my being absent from home, reached me at the same time, when 
there appeared to be no reason left for further and more satis- 
factory explanation. 

I have felt this concern the more deeply because I am per- 
fectly convinced there was and is no difference in the Cabinet 
with respect to the neutral position to be maintained in French 
affairs, and because I have felt inclined from the first to the 
name individual opinion, the grounds of which you stated in 
your letter to J. Russell, as to the necessity of a coup d!iUA by 
one person to give France any chance of a peaceable future, 
though I wish such opinions had not been expressed to an 
ambassador, apparently not very well disposed to receive them* 
without having been previously communicated to J. Russell 
and to the Queen, knowing as I long have known the extent oi 
susceptibility which prevailed in that quarter on these mattera 
and greatly lamented, and which I have unsuccessfully laboured 
to combat. 


What I chiefly wish, however, to say to you on this occa- 
sion is, that not only have I approved of every essential act 
during your administration of foreign affairs at the time, but 
that there is not one with respect to which upon subsequent 
reflection I could wish to recall my approbation. Your policy 
will never, while you live, want the ablest of all defenders, but 
whether in or out of office (and J. Russell is well apprised upon 
what a slender thread my own tenure of office now hangs), I 
can never hear it impugned in public or in private without 
expressing my conviction and admiration of its great ability, 
and real consistency with the interests, and, above all, the 
honour of the country. 

Yours sincerely, 


The following letter to his brother gives, in Lord 
ftdmerston's own words, a full story of the whole 
matter: — 

Broadlands : Jan. 22, 1852. 
I have not been able to write to you sooner except by the 
somrnon post, and I did not like to send you details by that 
conveyance. The history of my dismissal is short and simple. 
I had, like all the rest of the world, long considered the French 
Constitution of 1848 as one that would not long work, and as 
in arrangement which approached to the very verge of anarchy. 
Die course pursued by the Assembly — and more especially after 
its meeting in the beginning of November — showed that a con- 
Bet between that body and the President was inevitable ; that 
there was no way out of the difficulty in which France was 
placed except by some act of violence against the law and Con- 
itiftation ; and it seemed to me better that in such a conflict 
the President should prevail over the Assembly, than that the 
Assembly should prevail over the President. Therefore when 
the coup d'etat took place, and Walewsky came to me on the 
Tuesday (December 3) to tell me of it, I expressed to him 
these opinions. The President could offer to France settled 
government, with order and internal tranquillity ; the Assembly 
Bad no eligible candidate to offer in the room of the President. 
Henry V. had only a minority with him, and could not with 
that govern the majority of the nation. The Comte de Paris 
is only about twelve years old, and France could not now accept 
a regency of six or eight years' duration, with a foreign 
ani Protestant princess as Regent, and Thiers as Prime 


Minister. The Triumvirate of the Generals Cavaignac, Chan- 
gamier, and Lamoriciere would be military despotism; and 
Joinville as President would be a political solecism. Any one 
of these arrangements would have been civil war and local and 
temporary anarchy ; and the Assembly had nothing else to offer. 
Walewsky wrote on the 3rd a private letter to Turgot, giving 
him an account of what I had said, the sum and substance of 
which was, that I thought that what the President had done 
the day before was the best thing for France, and, through 
France, for the rest of Europe. On the 3rd, Normanby, who 
had for some time been on very bad personal terms with the 
President, wrote a despatch to ask whether in consequence of 
what had happened, he should alter in any way his relations 
with the French Government. On the 5th I sent him a de- 
spatch, saying that he was to make no change in his relations 
with the French Government, nor to do anything which would 
wear the appearance of any interference in the internal affairs 
of France. He received this despatch on the 6th, and went 
immediately to Turgot to tell him of it — a step wholly unneces- 
sary, because all he was told to do was to make no change in 
his relations with the French Government. Turgot, who was 
nettled at the existence of any doubt on the subject, said that 
the communication was unnecessary, as he had two days before 
received an account from Walewsky, saying that I had entirety 
approved what the President had done, and thought he could 
not have acted otherwise. This despatch having been read by 
the Queen and John Russell, the latter wrote to me to say that 
he hoped I should be able to contradict that report of what I 
had said. To this I replied that the particular expressions 
ascribed to me were rather a highly-coloured version of what I 
had said, but that it must be remembered that Normanby 
reported what Turgot had said to him verbally ; that Turgot 
stated from memory what Walewsky had written in a despatch 
or letter received two days before; and that Walewsky gave 
the impression which he had derived from our conversation, but 
not the particular words which I had used. But I stated to 
John Russell, at considerable length, my reasons for thinking 
that what had been done was the best thing for France and for 

To this John Russell replied that I mistook the point at 
issue between us. That the question was not whether the 
President was or was not justified in doing what he has done, 
but whether I was justified in expressing any opinion thereupon 


Walewsky without having first taken the opinion of the 
j&binet on the matter. To this I answed that his doctrine so 
laid down was new, and not practical. That there is a well- 
known and perfectly understood distinction in diplomatic 
intercourse between conversations which are official and which 
bind Governments and conversations which are unofficial and 
'which do not bind Governments That my conversation with 
Walewsky was of the latter description, and that I said nothing 
to him which would in any degree or way fetter the action of 
the Government ; and that if it was to be held that a Secretary 
tf State could never express any opinion to a foreign Minister 
kq passing events, except as the organ of a previously-consulted 
Cabinet, there would be an end of that easy and familiar inter- 
course which tends essentially to promote good understanding 
etween Ministers and Governments. 

John Russell replied to this that my letter left him no 
ternative but to advise the Queen to place the Foreign Office in 
±er hands ; but he offered me the Lord Lieutenancy of Ireland, 
r any other arrangement which I might prefer. Of course, 
wing been so cavalierly sent to the right-about, I told him 
lere were obvious reasons which prevented me from availing 
lyself of his offers, and that I only waited to learn the name 
? my successor to give up the seals. John Russell distinctly 
mowed down the ground of my dismissal to the fact of my 
iving expressed an opinion on the coup d'etat without refer- 
ace to the nature of that opinion, Johnny saying that that 
-as not the question. Now, that opinion of mine was expressed 

1 conversation on Tuesday, the 3rd ; but on Wednesday, the 
th, we had a small evening party at our house. At that party 
ohn Russell and Walewsky were, and they had a conversation 
H the coup d'etat, in which Johnny expressed his opinion, 
r hich Walewsky tells me was in substance and result pretty 
early the same as what I had said the day before, though, as 
e observed, John Russell is not so expansif as I am ; but, 
other, on Friday, the 6th, Walewsky dined at John Russell's, 
nd there met Lansdowne and Charles Wood ; and in the course 
F that evening John Russell, Lansdowne, and Charles Wood 
11 expressed their opinions on the coup d'etat, and those 
pinions were, if anything, rather more strongly favourable 
mn mine had been. Moreover, Walewsky met Lord Grey 
ding in the Park, and Grey's opinion was likewise expressed, 
id was to the same effect. It is obvious that the reason 
isigned for my dismissal was a mere pretext, eagerly caught 


at for want of any good reason. The real ground was a weak 
truckling to the hostile intrigues of the Orleans family, Austria, 
Russia, Saxony, and Bavaria, and in some degree also of the 
present Prussian Government. All these parties found their 
respective views and systems of policy thwarted by the course 
pursued by the British Government, and they thought that if 
they could remove the Minister they would change the policy. 
They had for a long time past effectually poisoned the mind of 
the Queen and the Prince against me, and John Russell giving 
way, rather encouraged than discountenanced the desire of the 
Queen to remove me from the Foreign Office. 

In the meanwhile the papers, having but little to discuss, 
have all over the country — both London and provincial papers 
— been full of my removal; and the general tone has been 
highly complimentary to me, and far from agreeable to John 
Russell. This, of course, has much annoyed him ; and I think, 
if known by the Court, must afford them matter for reflection. 

The general opinion is that the Ministry will not stand long 
after the meeting of Parliament. Indeed, it is likely that they, 
will be wrecked upon the Reform Bill. At all events, it is 
scarcely probable that they should get through the session 
without some defeat which would lead to their resignation. In 
that case the Queen would send for Lord Derby, who would 
probably be able to form a Government even without the 
Peelites ; but they would most likely join him. However, all 
these things are matters of speculation. 

Parliament met on February 3. Immediately after 
the speeches of the mover and seconder of the Address L 
were concluded, the Prime Minister was asked to explain' 
the reason for Lord Palmerston's removal from office. 
Lord John Russell began by saying : — 

It will be right that I should first state to the House what 
I conceive to be the position which a Secretary of State holds 
as regards the Crown in the administration of foreign aflahv 
and as regards the Prime Minister of this country. With 
respect to the first, I should state that when the Crown, in con- 1 
sequence of a vote of the House of Commons, places its con- 
stitutional confidence in a Minister, that Minister is, on th» 
other hand, bound to afford to the Crown the most frank and 
full detail of every measure that is taken, or to leave to the* 
Crown its full liberty, a liberty which the Crown must possess** 




f saying that the Minister no longer possesses its confidence 
►uch I hold to be the general doctrine. But as regards the noble 
ord, it did so happen that in August, 1850, the precise terms 
fere laid down in a communication on the part of Her Majesty 
with respect to the transaction of business between the Grown 
ttd the Secretary of State. I became the organ of making 
that communication to my noble friend, and thus became re- 
sponsible for the document I am about to read from. 

I shall refer only to that part of the document which has 
reference to the immediate subject : — 

' The Queen requires, first, that Lord Palmerston will dis- 
foctly state what he proposes in a given case, in order that the 
foeen may know as distinctly to what she is giving her royal 

' Secondly, having once given her sanction to a measure, that 
be not arbitrarily altered or modified by the Minister. Such 
i act she mnst consider as failing in sincerity towards the 
rown, and justly to be visited by the exercise of her constitu- 
»al right of dismissing that Minister. She expects to be kept 
formed of what passes between him and the foreign Ministers 
rfbre important decisions are taken based upon that intercourse ; 
• receive the foreign despatches in good time, and to have the 
sifts for her approval . sent to her in sufficient time to make 
xself acquainted with their contents before they must be 
nt off. The Queen thinks it best that Lord John Russell 
lould show this letter to Lord Palmerston.' 

I sent that accordingly, and received a letter in which the 
able lord said :— * 

' I have taken a copy of this Memorandum of the Queen, 
ad will not fail to attend to the directions which it contains/ 

Lord John Eussell then proceeded to remark that — 

The first important transaction in which Lord Palmerston 
ad taken part since the end of the last session of Parliament 
as the reception of a deputation of delegates from certain 
letropolitan parishes respecting the treatment of the Hungarian 
jfogees by the Turkish Government. On this occasion he 
jord John Eussell) thought that his noble friend had exhibited 
•me want of due caution ; but he gave him the credit of sup- 
wing that this was through an oversight. 

tiie next occasion to which he thought it necessary to refer 
lated to the events which had taken place on December 2 r 



The instructions conveyed to our ambassador from the 
'Queen's Government were to abstain from all interference in 
the internal affairs of that country. Being informed of an 
alleged conversation between Lord Palmerston and the French 
ambassador repugnant to these instructions, he (Lord John) 
had written to that noble lord ; but his inquiries had for some 
days met with a disdainful silence, Lord Palmerston having 
meanwhile, without the knowledge of his colleagues, written a 
-despatch to Lord Normanby, in which he, however, evaded the 
question whether he had approved the act of the President. 
The noble lord's course of proceeding in this matter he con- 
sidered to be putting himself in the place of the Crown, and 
passing by the Crown, while he gave the moral approbation of 
England to the acts of the President of the Republic of France, 
in direct opposition to the policy which the Government had 
hitherto pursued. 

Under these circumstances, he (Lord John Russell) had no 
alternative but to declare that, while he was Prime Minister, 
Lord Palmerston could not hold the seals of office ; and he had 
assumed the sole and entire responsibility of advising the Crown 
to require the resignation of his noble friend, who, though ho 
had forgotten and neglected what was due to the Crown and 
his colleagues, had not, he was convinced, intended any personal 

Lord Palmerston then rose, and the following is a 
report of what he said : — ^ 

He should be sorry if the House and the country should 
run away with the notion which Lord John Russell seemed to 
entertain, that he had abandoned principles. He concurred in 
Lord John's definition of the relations between the Foreign 
Minister and the Crown, and he contended that he had done 
nothing inconsistent with these relations. With reference to 
the deputation on the subject of the release of the Hungarian 
refugees, he had thought it to be his duty to receive it. He 
had repudiated certain expressions contained in the address, and 
he had said nothing upon that occasion which he had not 
uttered in that House and elsewhere. He then entered into a 
lengthened statement of the transactions in reference to the 
-coup d "etat in France, which had been represented by Lord John 
Russell as forming the groundwork of his removal from office, 
After recounting the interview with Count Walewsky on Decern- 


palmerston's reply. 221 

•er 3, he said that on that same day Her Majesty's ambassador 
A Paris wrote a despatch to ask what instructions he should 
soeive for his guidance in France during the interval before the 
vote of the French people on the question that was to be pro- 
posed to them, and whether in that interval he should infuse 
into the relations with the French Government any greater 
degree of reserve than usual. 

I took [Lord Palmerston proceeded to say] the opinion of 
the Cabinet on that question, and a draft of that opinion was 
prepared and sent for Her Majesty's approbation. The answer 
could only be one in consistence with the course we had pursued 
since the beginning of the events alluded to, and was such as 
lie noble lord has read. Her Majesty's ambassador was in- 
fracted to make no change in his relations with the French 
Government, and to do nothing that should wear the appear- 
nce of any interference with the internal affairs of France. 
Siere was no instruction to communicate that document to the 
tench Government; it simply contained instructions, not in 
let what the English ambassador was to do, but what he was 
> abstain from doing. The noble lord, however (the Marquis 
f Normanby), thought it right to communicate to the French 
fmister for Foreign Affairs the substance of that document, 
ooompanying his communication with certain excuses for the 
©lay, which, however, did not rest with that noble marquis, as 
ris despatch to the English Government was dated December 3. 
Fhe French Minister stated that he had nothing to com- 
dain of with respect to the delay, and the less, indeed, because 
wo days before he had received from the French ambassador in 
Umdon a stajbement which the noble lord (Lord John Russell) 
las read, viz., that I entirely approved of what had been done, and 
bought the President of the French fully justified. That was a 
tomewhat highly-coloured explanation of the result of the long 
Conversation we held together. Those particular words I never 
ised, and probably the French ambassador never would have 
Conceived it consistent with the dignity due to his country to 
tek the approval of a Foreign Secretary of State. Consequently 
he approval was not given, and was not asked. When the 
Marquis of Normanby's despatch reached my noble friend (Lord 
Ibhn Russell), he wrote to say he trusted that I could contra- 
Bet that report. There was, as he has stated, an interval 
between the receipt of the noble lord's letter and my answer. 
Qie noble lord's letter was dated the 14th, and my answer the 
6th. I was at the time labouring under a heavy pressure of 


business, and wishing fully to explain the opinion I expressed, 
it was not until the evening of the 16th that I was able to 
write my answer. The noble lord got it early next morning; 
on the 17th. 

This letter has already been given above as well ai 
the history of the correspondence which ensued, and 
Lord Palmerston's claim for the unfettered action of a 
foreign secretary. He then continued : — 

Now, I expressed this opinion to which the noble lord has 
referred to the French ambassador on December 3 ; but was 
I the only member of the Cabinet who did thus express an 
opinion on passing events 1 I am informed that on the evening 
of that very day, and under the same roof as I expressed my 
opinion, the noble lord at the head of the Government, in con- 
versation with the same ambassador, expressed his opinion. 
(Hear, hear, and laughter.) I cannot tell what that opinion 
was, but from what has fallen from the noble lord this evening, 
it may be assumed that that opinion was not very different 
even from the reported opinion which I am supposed to have 
expressed. Was that all 1 On the 5th, and in the noble lord's 
own house, I have been informed that the French ambassador 
met the noble lord, the President of the Council, and the Chan- 
cellor of the Exchequer. The noble lord again expressed an 
opinion, and the President of the Council and the Chancellor 
of the Exchequer also expressed an opinion. (Cheers and 
laughter.) And be it remembered that the charge is not ilia 
nature of the opinion, for the noble lord distinctly told me, 
' You mistake the question between us. It was not whether £ 
the President was justified or not, but whether you were : 
justified in expressing an opinion on the matter at all/ I believe \ 
that the noble lord, the Secretary of State for the Colonies, did 
also, in those few days, express an opinion on those events; and 
I have been informed also that the then Vice-President of tba 
Board of Trade, and now the Secretary of State for Foreign 
Affairs, also expressed his opinion. Then it follows that every 
member of the Cabinet, whatever his political avocations may 
have been, however much his attention may have been devoted 
to other matters, is at liberty to express an opinion of passing 
events abroad ; but the Secretary of State for Foreign Aflain, 
whose peculiar duty it is to watch those events, who is unfit 
for his office if he has not an opinion on them, is the only man 


dot permitted to express an opinion; and when a foreign 
Minister comes and tells him that he has news, he is to remain 
silent like a speechless dolt or the mute of some Eastern pacha. 
{Cheers and laughter.) Now I am told, ' It is not your con- 
versation with M. Walewsky that is complained of, but your 
despatch to the Marquis of Normanby.' What had I stated in 
that despatch in reference to which a great parade has been 
made, as if I had been guilty of breach of duty to the Crown 
tod of my obligations to the Prime Minister, in sending it 
without previously communicating with the noble lord % No 
man can lay down the matter more strongly than I have in 
reference to the obligations of the Secretary of State for Foreign 
Aflkirs. I have always admitted, that if the Secretary of State 
for Foreign Affidrs sends a despatch of importance to an am- 
bassador abroad without ascertaining the opinion of the Prime 
Minister of the Crown, he is guilty of a breach of duty. But 
here are many cases in which it is perfectly well known that 
36 is only expressing the opinion of the Government, and in- 
xmvenience might arise from delay. 

Lord Palmerston then concluded his statement by 
naintaining that it was a misrepresentation of the fact 
so say that he had given instructions to Lord Normanby 
inconsistent with the relations of general intercourse 
between England and France* It was no instruction 
it alL He did not profess to give the opinion of the 
Government or that of England. It was his own opinion, 
ind whether right or wrong, it was shared by numbers 
in France. Therefore the charge made against him by 
Lord John Russell, founded on this despatch, had no 
foundation either in justice or in facts. 

He resumed his seat with the House only partially 
with him. The attack had been very vigorous : his 
defence had been incomplete. The motives that actuated 
him in his comparative reserve may be gathered from 
the following details as to these events, which he gave 
in a letter to Lord Lansdowne, 1 relating a conversation 
with the Duke of Bedford in October, 1852. 

The reason assigned by John Russell, in his letters to me, 
far his abrupt dismissal of me, was an opinion which I had ex- 

1 Dated Broadlands, October 1852. 


pressed to Walewsky about the President's coup <FHat, in a 
morning conversation at my house, the day after that event had 
happened — that opinion being to the effect that the President 
had acted in self-defence, and that what he had done was, in the 
circumstances of the case, the best thing for France. Now, I 
said to the Duke, in regard to the validity of that ground, I 
have only to repeat to you what Count Walewsky told me, 
either the day (or two days) before the matter was discussed m 
the House of Commons. 

Count Walewsky then said to me that he had the day before 
had with John Russell a conversation which concerned me, and 
which he thought it right to report to me. He said that Lord 
John had sent for him, and had said he wished to ask him a 
question. He had been told that Count Walewsky had said that 
he, Lord John, had expressed to him, Count Walewsky, in re* ■ 
gard to the coup d'etat, opinions similar in substance and effect ^ 
to those which had been expressed to him by me, and he wished : 
to know if that report was true. Count Walewsky said that j 
his reply to Lord John was, that that report was perfectly true; | 
that it was true that he had said so, and that what he had said - 
was true. He told Lord John that he, Lord John, had upon 
two occasions expressed such opinions. The first occasion was 
on the evening of Wednesday, the 3rd of December, the same 
day in the morning of which I had expressed to him. Count : 
Walewsky, the opinion which he, Lord John, had found fault 
with. That he, Count Walewsky, had that evening met Lord 
John at a party at Lady Palmerston's, and that then and there 
Lord John had spoken of the event of the day before in terms 
similar to those used by me in the morning. The second occa- 
sion was the Friday following, when he, Count Walewsky, dined 
with Lord John, and met there some other members of the 
Cabinet, and that evening, said Count Walewsky to Lord John, 
' upon that very sofa ' (pointing to one in the room), ' you ex- 
pressed opinions if anything stronger than what Lord Palmer- 
ston had said to me on the Wednesday ; and whereas I had 
contented myself with reporting what Lord Palmerston had said 
in a private letter to Monsieur Turgot, I made what you had 
said the subject of an official despatch.' Count Walewsky said 
to me that after this Lord John asked him whether he had told 
all this to me ; and Count Walewsky said that, having recently 
passed a day at Broadlands, he had talked over with me the 
circumstances connected with my dismissal from office, and that 
he had stated to me all that he had then repeated to Lord John. 


( But,' said Lord John, ' does Lord Palmerston mean to say all 
this in the House of Commons?' 'Of that, 1 said Count 
Walewsky, * I know nothing. 1 

I may here observe that I stated in my speech in the House of 
Commons the general result of this communication made to me 
by Walewsky ; but I did not like to be too precise, or to go 
into details, out of delicacy to Count Walewsky, though he 
would have had no objection to my making the assertion on his 
authority. > 

. I then observed to the Duke of Bedford that the ground on 
which Lord John Russell had, in his letters to me, placed my 
dismissal, even if it ^ad had any intrinsic validity, which it had 
not, was destroyed by this statement, which showed that I had 
done and said no more than John Russell himself had said and 
done. But I went on to say to the Duke that I had still further 
to complain of the manner in which John Russell had made his 
statement in the House of Commons; for that, finding his 
original ground, as put forward in his letters to me, thus rendered 
untenable, he had, in his speech, adopted another ground, and 
had put my dismissal partly on the ground — first, that I had 
taken two days more than I ought to have taken to answer a 
demand for explanation made to him by the Queen, and sent 
on to me; and, secondly, on the ground that, by sending a de- 
spatch to Normanby without previously sending the draft to the 
Queen, I had incurred the penalty of dismissal, intimated by 
the Queen's Memorandum of August 1850, as likely to be the 
result of such an omission. I said to the Duke that the Queen's 
demand for explanation as to what I had said to Count Walewsky 
came to me from John Russell at a moment when I was over- 
whelmed with pressing office business, thrown into arrear by 
my time having been occupied by a succession of Cabinet meet- 
ings ; that the explanation to be given by me was necessarily a 
long one ; that, in order to write it, I had to sit up one night 
till half-past four in the morning, having put a messenger under 
orders to take it down to Wobura in an office-box by the first 
tnin of the next day ; and that in the box which contained my 
explanation I put a short note, saying that it was then half-past 
firar in the morning, that I could not sit up any longer to take 
a copy of my paper, and that I begged that John Russell would 
at his leisure either send me a copy of it or let me have it again, 
that I might copy it. ' Well/ said I to the Duke, * if John Russell 
thought that the Queen would consider the two or three days' de- 
lay in the transmission of my reply to her inquiry as disrespectful 



to her, what was it his duty to do when my explanation reached 
him 1 Why, of course, to send it off immediately to Osborne, 
where the Queen then was. But what did he do ? Why, that 
very afternoon he quietly sent my paper back to me, that I 
might take a copy of it ; and he added that when I returned it 
to him he would transmit it to the Queen, with a copy of the 
answer which he intended to write to it. Thus interposing a 
further delay of at least three days, in addition to the previous 
delay which he made the subject of complaint against me/ 

Then I said to the Duke that I thought it was unhandsome 
by me, and very wrong by the Queen, for him, John Russell, 
to have read in the House of Commons the Queen's Memoran- 
dum of August 1850, hinting at dismissal. In regard to the 
Queen, he was thus dragging her into the discussion, and mak- 
ing her a party to a question which constitutionally ought to be, 
and before Parliament could only be, a question between me 
and the responsible adviser of the Crown ; and I said that this 
mention of the Queen as a party to the transaction had given 
rise to newspaper remarks much to be regretted, and which the 
Prime Minister ought not to have given an occasion for. 

I said that, as regards myself, the impression created by his 
reading that Memorandum was, that I had submitted to an 
affront which I ought not to have borne ; and several of my 
friends told me, after the discussion, that they wondered I had 
not sent in my resignation on receiving that paper from the 
Queen through John Russell. My answer to those friends, I 
said, had been, that the paper was written by a lady as well af 
by a Sovereign, and that the difference between a lady and a 
man could not be forgotten even in the case of the occupant of 
a throne ; but I said that, in the first place, I had no reason to 
suppose that this Memorandum would ever be seen by, or be 
known to, anybody but the Queen, John Russell, and myself; 
that, secondly, my position at that moment, namely, in Augoflt 
1850, was peculiar. I had lately been the object of violent 
political attack, and had gained a great and signal victory in the 
House of Commons and in public opinion : to have resigned 
then would have been to have given the fruits of victory to 
adversaries whom I had defeated, and to have abandoned my 
political supporters at the very moment when by their means I 
had triumphed. But, beyond all that, I had represented to 
my friends, by pursuing the course which they thought I ought 
to have followed, I should have been bringing for decision at 
the bar of public opinion a personal quarrel between myself 


tail my Sovereign — a step which no subject ought to take, if 
ke can possibly avoid it ; for the result of such a course must 
lie either fatal to him or injurious to the country. If he should 
fwve to be in the wrong, he would be irretrievably condemned ; 
if the Sovereign should be proved to be in the wrong, the 
Monarchy would suffer. . 

This resort to the Memorandum of August 1850, 
far the purposes of debate in the House of Commons, 
we Lord John Eussell an unexpected success in the 
sussion. It was an unfair advantage, because, as we 
lee- from the foregoing letter, Lord Palmerston con- 
sidered his tongue to be tied. in the matter. In con- 
lequence the general impression on the House was, no 
loubt, for the moment, unfavourable to Lord Palmerston. 
En a reminiscence of this debate which Lord Dalling left 
behind him, the scene is described as follows : — 

I happened to be under the gallery on the night in which 
Lord Russell made his explanations. 

TTia speech certainly was one of the most 'powerful I ever 
heard delivered. It was evidently intended to crush an expected 
antagonist, and, by the details into which it went, took Lord 
Palmerston completely by surprise. I listened to his reply 
with the more affectionate interest, since he was kind enough 
to mention my own name with praise ; but I felt, and all his 
biends felt, that it was feeble as a retort to the tremendous 
mult that had been made on him. 

I remember Mr. Bernal Osborne coming to the bench where 
I was sitting, and expressing to me a regret similar to that which 
I felt myself; and I think it was the night after, in debate, 
flat, meeting Mr. Disraeli on the staircase of Ashburnham 
House, which was then the Russian embassy, he said in his 
peculiar manner, ' There was a Palmerston ! ' 

'Palmerston is smashed,' was, indeed, the expression 
generally used at the clubs ; but it did not in the least convey 
the idea that Lord Palmerston had formed of his own position. 

I must say, in truth, that I never admired him so much as 
it this crisis. He evidently thought he had been ill-treated ; 
but I never heard him make an unfair or irritable remark, nor 
lid he seem in anywise stunned by the blow he had received, 
>r dismayed by the isolated position in which he stood. 




I should say that he seemed' to consider that he had bad I 
quarrel put upon him, which it was his wisest course to dose bjr| 
receiving the fire of his adversary and not returning it. 

He could not, in fact, have gained a victory against 
Premier on the ground which Lord John Russell had 
for the combat which would not have # been more 
disadvantageous to him than a defeat. The faults of which hi] 
had been accused did not touch his own honour nor that of \m\ 
country. Let them be admitted, and there was an end of titt 
matter. By-and-by an occasion would probably arise in whidj 
he might choose an advantageous occasion lor giving battle, ani 
he was willing to wait calmly for that occasion. 

It came soon enough. 




Your power and your command are taken off, 
And Cassio roles in Cyprus. — Othello, Act V. So. 1. 

Iff February Lord J. Eussell brought in a Militia Bill 
which, was intended to develop a local militia for the 
defence of the country. Lord Palmerston at once ex- 
pressed his dissatisfaction at the form of the measure, 
and in committee on the Bill moved as an amendment 
to omit the word ' local/ so as to constitute a regular 
militia, which should be legally transportable all over 
the kingdom, and so be always ready for any emergency. 
This he carried against the Government by a majority 
of eleven, and the Eussell Administration came to an 
end. The event created little wonder, as the progressive 
feebleness of the Cabinet, since one of its strongest 
members left it, had for some time prepared the public 
mind for a change. We have, however, Sir George 
Lewis's testimony 1 that the division on the amendment 
was a surprise, and that Lord Palmerston himself did 
not wish to turn out the Government ; but the cup 
fcing full, a little movement was sufficient to make it 
run over. Lord Derby formed a Government, after 
having invited the co-operation of Lord Palmerston, 
who thus writes to his brother : — 


1 Sir G. Lewis to Sir E. Head. « Letters,' p. 251. 


C. G. : February 24, 1852. 
I have had my tit-for-tat with John Russell, and I turned 
him out on Friday last. I certainly, however, did not expect 
to do so, nor did I intend to do anything more than to persuade 
the House to reject his foolish plan and to adopt a more 
sensible one. I have no doubt that two things induced him 
to resign. First, the almost insulting manner towards him in 
which the House, by its cheers, went with me in the debate; 
and, secondly, the fear of being defeated on the vote of censure 
about the Cape l affairs which was to have been moved to-day. 
As it is, the late Government have gone out on a question 
which they have treated as a motion, merely asserting that 
they had lost the confidence of the House, whereas if they bad 
gone out on a defeat upon the motion about the Cape, they 
would have carried with them the direct censure of the House 
of Commons. Lord Derby has formed his Government solely 
out of his Protectionist party — none of any other party would 
join him. He made me on Sunday, immediately after he bad 
seen the Queen, a very civil and courteous offer to join kim, 
but of course it was impossible for me to do so on account of 
my entire difference with him on the question of imposing a 
duty on the importation of corn even if there had been no ottor 
reasons, but there are many other reasons against it. Tbe 
House is adjourned till Friday, and then it will probably adjourn 
again for ten days to allow time for the new Ministers to be 
re-elected. They are not going to dissolve immediately, bat 
will do so as soon as the Estimates are voted and the Mutiny HA 
passed. I cannot conceive that such a Government can stand 
long, or can even get a majority by a fresh general election. 

And to his brother-in-law, Mr. Laurence Sulivan,he 
write* the same day:- 

Lord Derby invited me to join him, but as he said that hfe 
adherence to or abandonment of protective duties on corn mt 
to depend on the result of the next general election, that 
announcement created a preUminary obstacle which rendered 
all farther discussion as to any other points needless. I couU 
not, however, have joined him even if that objection had heex 
removed, because his Government was not to be formed upoi 
any broad principle of a general union of parties, but he mean 
me to come in singly ; and the office of all others which he ha 

1 The Caffix war of 1861. 


intended to propose to me was that of Chancellor of the 
Exchequer, which is, of coarse, departmentally subordinate to 
the First Lord of the Treasury. I do not mean to say that, 
irrespective of the question of Protection, I should have been 
much disposed to join him in any case ; but if his Government 
had been framed on a comprehensive principle, and Protection 
had been thrown overboard, the matter would have required 

Ministers brought in and carried their own Militia 
Bill, which Lord John Eussell opposed, but which was 
strongly supported by Lord Palinerston on the second 
leading. In the following letters he describes with an 
accurate forecast the position of affairs ; but it is curious 
to notice that Lord Aberdeen, who was to be Prime 
Minister within eight months, is not even mentioned as 
a possible choice : — 

Carlton Gardens : April 30, 1852. 

My dear "William, — It is a long time since I wrote to you, 
hat one finds one's time nearly as much occupied out of office 
as in ; there are so many things one has been obliged to leave 
undone during a five years' incessant Downing Street toil. But 
lam gradually getting through a mass of accumulated confusion. 
I am, however, a member of a committee on ventilation, which 
takes up much of my mornings, in addition to House of 
Commons attendance in evenings. 

Our new Government gets on pretty well; Disraeli has 
this evening made a good financial statement. Hi s speech of 
two hours was excellent, well arranged, clear, and well delivered, 
hut it made out the complete success of the financial and 
commercial measures of the last ten years, of the Peel and of 
the Whig Administrations, which, while they were in progress 
and under discussion, he and Derby were the loudest to con- 
demn. He was vociferously cheered by Liberals and Peelites, 
hut listened to in sullen silence by the supporters of the 
Government. His only proposal is that the income tax, which 
expired on the 5th of this month, shall be continued for one 
fear longer, to give the Government time to consider what 
)ermanent system they will propose; but he has entirely 
hrown over the idea of import duty on corn, or, in other 
rords, the principle of Protection. Opinions differ as to the 
robable duration of the session, but the chances are that the 


dissolution will not be till the end of June. I do not see that 
we need care much when it may be, now that by general con- 
sent it is agreed that the new Parliament is not to meet till 
November. The only inconvenience of delay is that people are 
put to trouble and expense by the measures necessary to guard 
against contests. In the meantime it is a real public advantage 
that the Tory party has come into office, and has had an oppor- 
tunity of seeing and learning and judging as responsible 
Ministers many things of which in Opposition they had very 
imperfect knowledge and conceptions. They do better than 
was expected of them, but, nevertheless, it is scarcely possible 
that they should stand as they are ; and if they do not get 
some material reinforcement, they will probably not live over 
next Christmas, notwithstanding any addition to the number 
of their supporters (and that will not be great) which a general 
election may bring them. The most natural reinforcement for 
them to look to would be the Peel party, not very numerous, 
counting about fifty or sixty, but containing a good many men 
of capacity. But as yet it seems to me that the Peelite leaders 
have not softened the bitter animosity they have hitherto felt 
for the Derby Protectionists. There is no knowing, however, 
how far a liberal offer of places in the Government might alter 
those feelings, still I think it unlikely. I believe the Derby 
Government rather calculate upon inducing me to join them 
when Protection has had its public funeral ; on this point of 
course I am studiously silent, but I have no intention or incli- 
nation to enlist under Derby's banners. I do not think highly 
of him as a statesman, and I suspect that there are many matters 
on which he and I should not agree. Besides, after having acted 
for twenty-two years with the Whigs, and after having gained 
by, and while acting with them, any little political reputation 
I may have acquired, it would not answer nor be at all agree- 
able to me to go slap over to the opposite camp, and this merely 
on account of a freak of John Russell's which the whole "Whig 
party regretted and condemned ; moreover, I am in no great 
hurry to return to hard work, and should not dislike a little 
more holiday. On the other hand, I own that it would be a 
very pressing public emergency which would induce me to place 
myself again under John Russell, not on account of personal 
resentment, which I have ceased to feel, and he and I meet in 
private as good friends as ever, but he has shown on so many 
occasions such a want of sound judgment and discretioruthat I 
have lost all political confidence in him. This last frolic of his 


posing the organisation of a militia by the present Govern- 
after having two months ago resigned the Government 
se, as he said, he was prevented (though he was not) from 
tag in a Bill for the same purpose, and after having stated in 
unent that his reason for resigning instead of dissolving 
bat he did not think it right to deprive the country during 
me necessary for a general election of the means of passing 
for the national defences — this frolic has astounded and 
tied the whole Whig party and all other parties into the 
in. The truth is that the Whigs would be glad to get rid 
in Russell and to have me in his stead if this change could 
>e accomplished. But such a substitution is not an easy 
It is difficult to reduce to the second place a public man 
or many years has occupied the first place both as leader 
position and as head of a Government ; and such an active 
us John Russell cannot be put upon the shelf. The fact is, 
& great talents, brilliant abilities, extensive knowledge ; 
9 wants judgment, and acts perpetually from sudden and 
tsidered impulse. 

the present Government should be overthrown, the 
on the Queen would make as to the person she would 
for to make a new Administration would of course much 
d upon the circumstances attending the defeat of the 
it Government. But John Russell, if she sent for him, 
I have much difficulty in forming a Government. He 
i try to get Graham and the Peelites ; with Graham alone 
lid not do. If the other Peelites were to join him he 
• make a strong Government, though he himself would be 
ment of weakness in it. If I was sent for, which, from 
feling towards me at Court, is highly unlikely, I should 
some difficulty in forming a Government, but I think I 
do it; and though I should be conscious that I am 
og in many of the requisite qualifications for the post of 
> Minister, yet I think, on the whole, my deficiencies are 
•eater than those of Derby and John Russell, or of any 
person who at present could be chosen for such a duty, 
session is not of long duration, and the general election 
r by the middle of July, I think that Emily and I shall 
>ly go over to Ireland for a month, that we shall then 
le end of August and the month of September at Broad- 
and run over to Paris for a fortnight or three weeks in 
*r, jtefore the meeting of Parliament in November. It 
ot be unuseful to have some communication with the 


President, or, as lie will by that time perhaps be, the Emperor. 
My Tiverton friends are staunch, and I am not likely to hay* 
any contest there. I have received many overtures from other 
places, but had the offers been ever so plainly demonstrative of 
success I should still have preferred keeping a good and safe 
seat when I have been lucky enough to get it. 

There was to be a dissolution at the end of the ses- 
sion, and speculation as to its result was afloat. 

C. G. : May 23, 1853. 

My dear William, — Those who have looked into the chances 
of the general election, like Tufnell, 1 for instance, think* that 
the next Parliament will in its subdivisions not differ very 
much from the present one, and that the Government will not- 
have a majority. If that should so be, and it seems probable* 
this Government can scarcely long survive the meeting of the 
new Parliament unless it is kept alive by the difficulty of 
forming another Administration ; but difficulties of that kmd 
seldom prevent the overthrow of what is, though they may 
embarrass those who have to build up something else to succeed 
what they have thrown down. John Russell would naturally 
be the person to be sent for to form a new Government, but 1* 
has gone down wofully in public opinion of late-, and especially 
in the opinion of his own party. His talents are beyond 
dispute, but the infirmity of his judgment seems equally un- 
deniable. At the same time there he is, at all events leader 
par droit de naissance, even though his title by conquHe bat 
been somewhat shaken ; and he is so circumstanced that while 
he cannot be dealt with as if he were not, and while he moat 
always be an important man while his health and strength 
lasts, yet he does not inspire that confidence which a Prima 
Minister ought to enjoy in order that he may be useful, and if 
he were again called upon to form a Government he might find it 
difficult to rally round him such colleagues as he would like 
to have. However, all speculations as to the future are at 
present idle. Much will depend upon the result of the general 
election, and the present Government are safe till the end of 
the year at all events. 

Young Stanley (Derby's son) is just come back ; he is a 
promising young man, and, if he trains on, he may be of mucb 

1 Had been < Whip.' 


sendee to his father's Administration. My position in the 
meanwhile is a very agreeable one. As I have no office which 
other people want, nobody abuses me in order to knock me 
town ; while both the Government and the Liberals, wishing 
to get me on their side, are vying with each other in civilities. 
This is all very well as long as it lasts, and after five years and 
a half of galley-slave labour, I find it not disagreeable to have 
some command of my time. 

While Aquila 1 was here I called upon him, and took that 
opportunity of telling him what I thought about the system of 

fjvernment in Naples. He asked me to put in writing what 
had said to him, and I did so. 

Lord Palmerston, who spoke and wrote Italian 
fluently and correctly, availed himself of his comparative 
leisure out of office to pay Count Aquila the compliment 
of corresponding with him in his own language. When 
Victor Emmanuel was made a Knight of the Garter at 
Windsor Castle, the Queen wished that he should have 
some notion of the oath which he was about to take. 
Lord Palmerston accordingly wrote out a translation in 
Italian and handed it to the King. Cavour, when he 
beard of it, was so interested in the incident that he 
asked for the paper, and, having ascertained that it was 
in Lord Palmerston's own handwriting, put it away, as 
ft& historical relic, among the archives under his control. 

In the early part of June there was a debate in the 
Bouse of Commons on the general conduct of our foreign 
lilairs by the Tory Government. The immediate oc- 
casion was the question of compensation to a Mr. Mather, 
m Englishman, who had been cut down in the streets of 
Florence by an Austrian officer. Lord Palmerston found 
bolt with the faltering action of the Foreign Office ; 
tod the next letter shows that he regarded the state of 
raUio affairs as merely provisional : — 

0. G. : June 20, 1852. 

My dear William, — Poor Malmesbury has got into sad 
isgraoe by his diplomatic mismanagement and his ungram- 
tatical despatches ; but every trade requires an apprenticeship, 

1 One of the Boyal Princes of Naples. 


and a man cannot expect to start at once into being a good 
Foreign Secretary any more than into being a good performer on 
the violin. He is, however, naturally a clever man, and, with 
practice, may become a good Minister ; but it was a hard trial 
for a man who had never been in any office whatever to under- 
take at once the management of our foreign affairs. 

We are now on the eve of our dissolution, which is expected 
to happen about Tuesday or Wednesday week. The House of 
Commons will have finished all its business by Friday week, 
and the Lords will wind up theirs in two or three days after- 
wards. Those who have studied the matter, and are able to 
judge, think that the general election will send us back a House 
of Commons divided into fractions, not very different in their 
relative proportions from those which exist in the present 
House. Some say the Derby party will gain from ten to 
twenty votes, some say it will lose from ten to twenty; bat ' 
that gain, if they make it, will not give them a majority of . 
their own ; and it may fairly be assumed, therefore, that the 
Government, as it now is constituted, cannot long survive the 
meeting of the new Parliament, if, indeed, it shall continue to 
exist as it now is until then. 

The fact is, that this Government has only two real men in 
its ranks — one in the Lords, and one in the Commons — Derby 
-and Disraeli. The rest are all cyphers as to debate, though 
many of them are, I fancy, inconvenient entities in counciL 

There will, however, be great difficulty found in the im- 
provement of this Government, or in the construction of a new 
one. The Peelites are the only party who could as a body join 
Derby, and they are at present very hostile to him, and seen 
to me to think more of forming a Government upon the roinf 
of his than of entering into a combination with him. Still, ft 
liberal offer of places might alter their feelings ; and they must 
be conscious that they are not numerous enough as a party to 
make a Government by themselves. John Russell, on the 
other hand, still clings to the position of leader of the Whig 
and Liberal party ; but a great number of the Whigs openly 
express their opinion that he has shown himself unfit to lead a 
large party or to be the head of a Government, and that he has 
in a great measure lost their confidence. He certainly has 
entirely lost mine. I feel no resentment towards him- personally 
or privately ; but it would require strong inducements to per- 
suade me to become again a member of a Government of which 
he was the head. I could feel no confidence in his discretion 


>r judgment as a political leader, and could place no trust in 
bis steady fidelity as a colleague having my official position at 
bis mercy. The best arrangement that could be made would 
probably be to place Lord Lansdowne as head of the Govern- 
ment, and under him John Russell and myself with other 
Whigs, who with the best of the Peelites might serve as col- 
leagues on equal terms. But Lansdowne's friends and family 
aay that he would not undertake such a task. We shall see. 
I am told that the Court does not like the present Govern- 
ment, and I can believe it. All royal persons like acquiescence 
and subserviency of demeanour and conduct. Peel and his 
Government, with Aberdeen as Foreign Secretary, spoilt them 
in this respect ; but Derby has an off-hand and sarcastic way 
about him, which is not the manner of a courtier, and has, I 
know, fought stoutly and successfully on the Danish question. 

As to me, my position is as agreeable as it is possible for 
any public man's position to be. The Court, indeed, are cold, 
though civil. Either they are conscious of having made a 
mistake in their passionate hostility to me, and do not like to 
acknowledge it, or else they still dislike me, and only are just 
civil enough to prevent remarks. But the public, the press, 
the Parliament, and political parties are all well disposed and 
emL Being free to act individually, I can express my own 
opinions without caring for others, and those opinions have 
generally been lucky enough to meet with concurrence. The 
Government are civil to me, hoping I may join them. The 
Whigs are civil to me, hoping that I may not leave them. 

We have got a new gardener at Broadlands ; our former 
one had dwindled down into a smoking sot. It is a trial to a 
Ban to be left as much alone and unlooked after as the gar- 
dener of a Secretary of State necessarily is. 

I hear that Aquila has been told at Naples to hold his 
tongue about anything he heard or saw in England, and not to 
obtrude the revolutionary doctrines of the northern barbarians 
apon the more civilised sages of the south of Europe. 

On the dissolution of Parliament Lord Palmerston 
in the first week in July went down to Tiverton, and 
was re-elected without opposition. At the former 
general election the Chartists had brought down a 
well-known lecturer, Mr. Julian Harney, to oppose 
him ; but on this occasion their hearts failed them 
lit the last moment. The only opponent, therefore, 


that he had to encounter was his old friend Rowcli££ 
the Tiverton butcher, whom he disposed of in his 
happiest manner, as will be seen by the following 
characteristic extracts from his speech on the hustings. 
Much speculation was afloat as to whether or not lie 
would join the Conservatives, now that he had broken 
from his former leader. Reporters flocked from all 
parts to gather any stray indications of his future 
conduct. These he dexterously baffled all through a 
humorous speech ; and when the Radical elector, im- 
patient of this evasion, boldly put the direct question, 
he was no less successfully parried. After thanking 
the electors for the honour which they had conferred 
on him for the fifth time, Lord Palmer ston proceeded :— 

We were told when we came to this place that we should 
not only have hot weather and a warm reception, but also ft 
hot contest. We were told, in mysterious language, in hand- 
bills circulated throughout the town, that an unknown candi- 
date would appear — a gentleman of ' independent principles/ 
I have heard, gentlemen, of an independent fortune ; I have 
heard of independent conduct; I have heard of independent 
character ; but the handbill does not condescend to explain what 
is meant by ' independent principles.' I presume the aHuaioa 
is to principles wholly independent of common sense, of justice, 
and of liberality. (Laughter.) I am glad, gentlemen, for the sake 
of the constituency of Tiverton, that such a man has not been 
found. We have been told that the general election in which 
this country is now engaged is to determine finally and for ever 
one great question — I mean the question of Protection or no 
Protection. It is my humble opinion that that question had 
been long since settled. I took the liberty of telling you last 
autumn, when I had the pleasure of being here, that when you 
saw the River Exe running up from the sea to Tiverton, 
instead of running down from Tiverton to the sea, you might 
then, and not until then, consider certainly that the revival of 
Protection was near at hand. I see no change in the current 
of the Exe. I don't even see that in the construction of your 
bridges you have taken any precautions to secure them against 
a turn of the stream. What, gentlemen, after all, is this great 
question which is called Protection ? Why, Protection i» a 
single word which represents a not very complex idea. Pro- 


on is a term something like that of ' independent princi- 
v to which I before referred ; but Protection, stripped of its 
rality, means practically taxing the food of the many for the 
of the interests of the few. I have that notion of the good 
o and the good feeling of the British nation, that I am con- 
ed they never will consent to revert to a system which is 
dad upon injustice and mistake. (Cheers.) If you wished to 
ir what has been accomplished by the Liberal commercial 
lures which have marked for some years past the course of 
tafcion, I should give you an answer similar to that in- 
led upon the tablet which records the burial-place of the 
t architect who built the magnificent cathedral of St. 
fa. You know very well that it is usual to adorn the 
d of sepulture of eminent persons with marble statues, or 
ips representing different ideas connected with them. The 
al-place of the architect of St. Paul's has no such ornaments. 
. find a simple inscription of his name, and it is added, ' If 
seek for his monument, look around you ' — look around at 
magnificent structure which bears witness to the skill he 
attained in his profession. Well, gentlemen, if I am asked 
t is the merit of those commercial measures which have of 
been formed into laws, I answer, ' Look around you.' 
k around you, beginning with the prosperity of the princely 
chant in his counting-house, and descending to the humble 
Ant reposing in his cottage. Ask the mother who carries 
babe in her arms ; ask the father whose children are 
png around him ; ask them what has been the benefit of 
commercial relaxations of late years. They will tell you 
benefit is felt both physically and morally, and they will 
■eat you not to revert to a system which would deprive 
n of the enjoyments with which they have been blessed, 
are, nevertheless, told that there is one class which, amid 
general prosperity, has suffered in some degree — namely, 
owners and occupiers of land. If I am asked what is the 
protection for them, I say their protection lies mainly in 
happiness and contentment of the rest of their fellow- 
ltrymen. Is that a vain assertion ) Why, look what hap- 
3d only three or four years ago. In 1848, when all Europe 
convulsed, when thrones were overturned, when constitu- 
3, ancient and modern, were alike levelled in the dust, what 
the example shown by this great country ) There were a 
men who, unjustly and unwisely dissatisfied with the con- 
>n of this country, wished for a violent change; but the 


moment that change wan threatened you saw every man 
great city of London, from the highest peer down to the 
blest labourer, mingling in honourable fellowship, and st 
forward to defend the laws and institutions of their com 
an array so formidable that it prevented even the di 
manifestation of disorder. Now, I believe that could no 
happened if the people of this country had not felt th 
course of legislation had been directed towards the g 
good. Now, gentlemen, those persons and those partie 
wish to improve the institutions of a great country lik 
are bound to go slowly and deliberately, and they are si 
meet with great resistance at every step which they tak 
for one, do not complain of that resistance. It belongs i 
character of the country, and it has this advantage, that i 
vents sudden and ill-considered alterations, and that me 
proposed as improvements receive that due consideratio 
discussion which renders them ultimately better adapted 
condition of the people to whom they apply. A love and 
tion for ancient practices and institutions is an honourab 
peculiar characteristic of the people of this country, and 
the last to wish that that honourable and useful seni 
should ever be discarded from their minds. There are a 
the nations of the Continent who are more volatile and 
apt to change, and national character is often evinced 1 
cumstances apparently trifling in themselves. Now, in 
parts of the Continent if an innkeeper wishes to recon 
his inn, he hangs up a sign of 'The New White Hon 
' The New Golden Cross.' The last novelty is that wl 
considered the most attractive. Here, gentlemen, a coi 
course is pursued, and, if the owner of a country ale 
wishes to draw custom, he hangs up the sign of 'Tb 
Plough New Revived.' There is at a place called Ha 
not Sir from London, an inn to which gentlemen who 
fond of pigeon-shooting used to resort to practise their 
Well, what is the sign of that inn ? It is the ' Old . 
Not that anybody was thought to prefer an old hat to f 
one, but it was expected that gentlemen would come to 
Old Hats ' in preference to * The New Hats.' Now, a riv 
was set up, and what was its sign ? Why, ' The Old Old 
and much it profited by that superlative designation, 
looking, as I came down here, at the railway time-table 
and I saw among the advertisements that a firm in the F 
announce an inn as the ' Old King's Head ;' and, in orde 


they may combine the attractions of national feeling with the 
attractions of good living, they add that it is the oldest turtle 
house in London. The people of this country, too, when they 
wish to express their attachment to the land they live in, call 
it, with affectionate endearment, ' Old England;' but that does 
not prevent them from repairing what may have got into decay, 
or from improving, or ornamenting, or embellishing that which 
it atfll good, but may be made better. 

Lord Palmerston then turned to the Militia Bill 
which the Government had just passed, and which he 
had supported, though many of his constituents dis- 
approved of it. 

I suppose that no man in this country, except the few who 

think in agreement with the author of a pamphlet which I felt 

it my duty to mention in the House of Commons, and who, 

good man I recommended that we should quietly submit to be 

invaded and conquered, in the hope that the conqueror would 

be so astonished at our submission that he would grow ashamed 

of himself, and would go away after having taken some 

£50,000,000 of our money — I presume, with this exception, 

that there is no man who has an English heart in his bosom 

who does not feel that England is worth defending, and that he 

ought to make any sacrifice rather than allow his country to be 

Qooquered. Why, I may say, gentlemen, that this country is 

the heart of civil and political liberty, and that the conquest of 

this country would not only be one of the greatest calamities to 

the country itself, but would be a misfortune to the whole of 

the civilised world. A poet, Campbell, who died not long ago, 

ays, in lines describing the fate of Poland, that — 

Hope for a season bade the world farewell, 
And Freedom shrieked when Kosciusko fell ; 

tat Hope would indeed for ever bid adieu to the world, and 
freedom would die and not shriek, if England were to be con- 
(JtterecL Tou have for the last two days had bands of music 
pttading your streets, followed by all the healthy-looking chil- 
dren of the place, some toddling along in the ranks who were 
scarcely able to keep their feet ; but that peaceful display has 
only manifested the joy and contentment of all the people of 
the town, What would you have said, however, if these bands 
had preceded a hostile force — if the armed hosts following the 
ttoacians had come to occupy at free quarters every house of 

vol. n. B 


your town, and, having occupied every house, to mat 
selves perfectly free with everything and everybody 
contained) I may be told these are vain appreher 
appeals made to the fanciful fears of the country simply 
purpose of obtaining the means of adding to the public e 
ture. That reminds me of a story which I remember 
heard of an elderly lady who lived near Henley-on-1 
and who, when an invasion was expected by Napoleoi 
parte, said she did not believe he would ever come, bee* 
had been told in her youth the Pretender was 'coming, 
he never came to Henley, she believed Napoleon Bo 
never would come there either. Now, I do not quote thi 
gentlemen, to throw any reflection upon the intelligent 
elderly portion of the fairer sex, because I remember 1 
heard that the Duchess of Gordon, in the time of M 
talking to an elderly statesman, was told by him, with re 
something in which he thought he had acted unwisely, * 
Madam, I feel that I am growing an old woman ; ' upoi 
the Duchess replied, ' I am glad to hear that that's all, for 
thought your Grace was growing an old man, and that's 
worse thing/ (Great laughter.) Now, I say that the 
who tell you that because you have had no invasion si 
Norman Conquest you never will have one, and that y 
not guard against it, are old men. Though they may 
old in years, they are old in imbecility of intellect. A 
who are most able to judge of military and naval op 
tell you that an invasion is perfectly possible ; that it 
possible now than it ever was before, mainly on accoun 
great change which has been made by the application o 
in naval and military operations ; and to tell you that 
safe from invasion now because you were able to pn 
before, to tell you that you are safe from invasions now 
precautions, because hitherto you have prevented it by 
tions, w the greatest of all possible absurdities. Wl 
happened it that you had no invasion at the time of wi 
good old lady at Henley spoke ? Because you had then 
standing army within the kingdom ; you had youi 
militia organised, enrolled, and on permanent pay; y 
besides, four hundred thousand volunteers, the whole 
was in arms, and the enemy could not have made an < 
attempt; but even then, I believe, and I have been 
good authority, it was only in consequence of the faih 
naval operation, by which the French fleets were 1 


formed a junction, that an attempt to invade you was not made. 
The result would have been such as it always will be when 
Englishmen are armed and prepared ; but I say that, if 
Englishmen are not armed, and are not prepared, they are 
doing injustice to themselves, and are not showing themselves 
worthy of those great and inestimable blessings which it has • 
teen the will of Providence to bestow upon them. 

Mr. Rowcliff then came forward and put several 
questions, the nature of which will be fully apparent 
from Lord Palmerston's reply. 

My good friend, Mr. Rowcliff, has reproached me for not 
coming often enough among you. I must say that he does not 
appear disposed to make my visits here particularly agreeable 
to me. (Laughter.) I cannot say that the manner in which 
he receives me affords much encouragement to cultivate the 
society of persons of his way of thinking. Whether Mr. Row- 
cliff is a Radical, a Chartist, or a Tory, I really cannot say. I 
believe that all parties may have some reason or other for 
Aunjing him. Mr. Bowcliff says that I only told you of the 
good that Governments and Parliaments have done, and that I 
nave myself done, and that I have not told you of the bad. 
"Why, God bless me ! it was quite unnecessary for me to do 
that when he was here. (Loud laughter.) If there was a bad 
thing to be recorded, to be invented, or to be imagined, I am 

S'te sure Mr. Rowcliff would be the first man to tell you of it. 
raghter, which was increased when Mr. Rowcliff called out 
'Question!') Well, Mr. Rowcliff is impatient under this 
eastigation. I will hit lower or higher, just as he pleases ; but 
he must allow me to hit somewhere. Mr. Rowcliff has asked me 
what Government I mean to join. Now, that is a question 
that must depend upon the future ; but I will tell him what 
Government I do not mean to join. I can assure you and him that 
1 never will join a Government called a Rowcliff Administration. 
(Great laughter and cheering.) Now, gentlemen, do not you 
imagine, because you deem it very absurd that there should be 
such an administration, that my friend Mr. Rowcliff is at all 
of that way of thinking ; for I believe I am not far mistaken 
in the opinion that he will consider everything going wrong in 
this world and in this country until the Rowcliff Administra- 
tion shall govern the land. Mr. Rowcliff has raked up old and 
^gone commonplaces about pensions. He ought to know — 

B 2 


because he has no right to talk upon the subject without in* 
forming himself about it — that pensions are now extremely 
limited in amount, and that they are only given for acknow- 
ledged public services. All those abuses of sinecures, of inor- 
dinate pensions, and of misbestowed pensions, which existed in 
former times, have been corrected, and the pension list has been 
enormously reduced. Mr. Rowcliff says I voted for the 
Militia Bill. As I have already explained to you, the material 
difference between the Militia Bill which I opposed and the 
Militia Bill which I supported was, that the former was founded 
upon compulsory service as the rule, admitting voluntary 
service as the exception, while the Bill of the present Govern- 
ment, which I supported, was founded upon voluntary service 
as the rule, and admits of compulsory service as only the remote 
and contingent exception. The militia now to be raised will be 
raised by bounty, and, if I have any fault to find with the Act, it 
is that I think the bounty is rather too high. That, however, 
I presume, can be no ground of objection to young men who 
may be disposed to enlist. My belief is that you will have 
no ballot, but that you will gain all your men from the spon- 
taneous patriotism of the people, aided by the inducement of 
the bounty. I do not think so ill of the young men of England 
as to believe that they will be afraid of twenty-one day/ 
service during the year in the militia. I commanded a regi- 
ment of local militia, which used to assemble for twenty-eight 
days' training, and I knew only one instance of a man who 
wished to go home before the twenty-eight days were over. 
He was one of the privates, who came to me and said, ' My 
lord, I wish you would let me go home/ I replied, '"Whyt 
You, have only a week to serve now.' ' Well,' said he, 'the 
fact is that before I corned here I promised a young woman in 
my parish that I'd marry her, if so be as I surwived the cam- 
paign.' (Great laughter.) I replied, ' Heaven forbid that the 
young woman should be disappointed ! Go home and marry 
her, and tell her the campaign has not been so dangerous as she 
may have thought it.' (Laughter.) I am convinced that the 
young men of England will not be afraid of three weeks' 
campaign in a militia regiment. Mr. Rowcliff has asked me 
my notions of Parliamentary reform. Now, Mr. Rowcliff is a 
Chartist, and is for the five or six or any other number of 
points of the Charter. I am not a Chartist, and I am too old 
to become a Chartist. I am quite satisfied with the constitution 
of the country under which I have been born, under which 1 



Lave lived, and under which I hope to die. I am for a limited 
and constitutional monarchy ; I am not for a republic. I have 
seen what republics are in other countries. I have seen that 
they cannot maintain their ground, and that when you try to 
establish them you invariably lead the way to a military 
despotism. I am for septennial Parliaments. A septennial 
Parliament, practically, is not a Parliament that lasts for seven 
years, for we all know that the average duration of the Parlia- 
ments during the last thirty or forty years has not been more 
than three or four years. If you establish annual Parliaments 
you will have the country in a perpetual commotion. Your 
members of Parliament will not have time tc learn their duties, 
and your business will be ill done. In the same way, if you 
liave triennial Parliaments, during the first year the members 
will be learning their business, in the second year they will 
just be beginning useful measures, and in the third year they 
will be thinking of the Bowclins of their respective consti- 
tuencies (laughter), and endeavouring to shape their course, 
not for the good of their country, but in order to conciliate the 
most noisy of their constituents. With regard to vote by bal- 
lot— secret voting — I object to it, because I think it at variance 
with the national character, and with the principle of our 
oonstitution. I think a true Englishman hates doing a thing 
in secret or in the dark. I do not believe that a majority of 
Englishmen would consent to give their votes in secret, even 
if the law permitted them to do so ; and I think if the law 
compelled them to do so, it would be a debasement of the 
national character. But I have a higher objection. I hold 
that the right of voting is a trust reposed in the elector for 
the public good. I do not think that a vote is given for the 
benefit of the man who possesses it, and that he can take it to 
the best bidder and get £5, £10, or £20, as the case may be. 
Tht Tote is given as a trust for the public and for the nation ; 
and I say that any trust reposed in a man for the public good 
he ought to perform in public. I say, that for men who are 
charged with the high and important duty of choosing the best 
men to represent the country in Parliament to go sneaking to 
the ballot-box, and, poking in a piece of paper, looking round 
to see that no one could read it, is a course which is unconsti- 
tutional and unworthy the character of straightforward and 
honest Englishmen. 

From Tiverton he went to Lewes to attend the 
meeting of the Eoyal Agricultural Society. In his 


speech on this occasion occurred that definition of dirt 
which has become a household word. The toast which 
he had to propose was, ' Prosperity to the Borough/ and, 
after remarks on its antiquity and its history as dating 
from the time of the Bomans, he spoke as follows : — 

Now, gentlemen, the Romans were great agriculturists, and 
drew great supplies of grain from this island. But to them 
was closed that wonderful book of knowledge which the scientific 
investigations of the present day have opened to you in that 
mysterious science of chemistry which was then unknown. If 
ever there was a case in which it was true that knowledge is 
power, that maxim is peculiarly true in reference to the aids 
which chemistry affordTto agriculture. Allusion has been 
made to the question of guano, and it has been mentioned, 
what is perfectly true, that when I held an office which would 
have enabled me, if it had been possible, to assist the farmer 
with regard to guano, my endeavours proved fruitless. In fact, 
the Peruvians were not more disposed to let us put a price on 
their guano than the British farmer would be to have a price 
put upon his corn. But, gentlemen, I cannot but think that 
the progress of chemical science, and the application of that 
science to practical agriculture, may lead you to something 
which will render you less anxious and solicitous about this 
same guano, and that instead of sending to the other end of the 
world for more manure for our fields, we shall find something 
nearly, if not quite, as good within a few hundred yards of our 
dwellings. Now, gentlemen, I have heard a definition of dirt 
I have heard it said that dirt is nothing but a thing in a wrong 
place. Now, the dirt of our towns precisely corresponds with 
that definition. It ought to be upon our fields, and if there 
could be such a reciprocal community of interests between the 
country and the towns, that the country should purify the 
towns, and the towns should fertilise the country, I am much 
disposed to think that the British farmer would care less than 
he does, though he still might care something, about Peruvian 
guano. Now, we all acknowledge that there are certain laws 
of nature, and that those who violate those laws invariably suffer 
for it. Well, it is a law of nature that nothing is destroyed. 
Matter is decomposed, but only for the purpose of again assuming 
some new form useful for the purposes of the human nee. 
But we neglect that law. We allow decomposed substances in 
towns to pollute the atmosphere, to ruin the health, to produce. 


premature misery, to be pestilent to life and destructive of 

existence. . Well, gentlemen, if instead of that there could be 

a system devised by which those substances which are noxious 

where they now are should be transferred so as to fertilise the 

adjoining districts, I am persuaded that, not only would the 

health of the town populations be thereby greatly improved, 

bat the finances of the agricultural population would derive 

considerable benefit from the change. I therefore recommend 

you gentlemen to ponder the maxim that ' Knowledge is power/ 

and as the diffusion of the most useful kind of knowledge is 

one of the main objects for which the Royal Agricultural 

Society was established, I am persuaded it will tend mainly 

and most efficiently to the advancement of the interest and the 

power of the agricultural class of the country. 

He returns to town, and sends off a report to his 
brother at Naples of what he has been doing, and what 
was the result of the general election. 

C. G. : July 24, 1852. 
My Tiverton election went off very well, and my little 
speeches there, as well as my speech at the Lewes Agricultural 
Meeting afterwards, have had much more success and praise 
than they really deserved. It is a comfort, however, when the 
world errs on the right side. 

The only thing that everybody, except a few family ad- 
herents, now consider impossible is, that John Russell should 
form a new Administration. He has lost immensely in public 
confidence and consideration. Some of the most sensible of 
the Whigs are trying to put Lord Lansdowne up as head of the 
party, and the man to form the next Administration. That 
Would do, and it seems to me that John Russell as well as I 
Ought serve under Lord Lansdowne, but I would certainly not 
serve again under Johnny, and Johnny, I should think, would 
scarcely serve under me, at least at present; and he is too 
Considerable a man, with all his faults and failings, to be put 
on the shelf and entirely passed by. Lansdowne would, I 
think, be willing to undertake such a task if he was called 
Upon to do so. The Government seem to have gained by the 
elections just strength enough to make it impossible to carry, 
fct the beginning of the session, whether it be October, Novem- 
ber, or January, or February, a vote of no confidence, and I 
should expect that no such vote will be attempted ; but they 


have not gained strength enough to cany them through their 
measures in the session, and what I expect is, that they will be 
beat upon Home of their fanciful schemes for relieving everybody 
and increasing nobody's burdens. This is too mountebankish 
to be practicable. 

Indirect overtures have lately been made to me from some 
members of the Government, but I at once made my excuses, 
saying, I am well content at present with my present position. 
Many people, and more than might have been supposed, talk of 
me as the next Minister, but I do not think that likely, and 
there would be at once the difficulty about John Russell. If I 
was Minister I should ask him to take the. Foreign Office, and 
go to the House of Lords to assist Lansdowne, or to lead if 
Lansdowne should not choose to do so. 

I have only one horse in training this year, and have woo 
four races with him, two of which, however, were only walla 
over. He is three years old, and likely to win me several more 
races. He runs next week for the Goodwood Cup, but I doubt 
his winning, as he would have to meet some very good horse*. 
He is by Venison out of an Emilius mare that I have had 
some time. 

We have lost some good men in this new Parliament, 
George Grey, Cardwell, Mahon, Grenfell, and several others, 
but then we have got rid of some bad ones, George Thompson, 
Urquhart, and the like. I do not reckon Anstey among the 
riddances, for though he came in to impeach me, he has latterly 
become one of my warmest friends and supporters. The fact 
is that Urquhart and Anstey were brought in at the election 
of 1847 in order that they might be set at me and demolish 
me if they could. Urquhart's seat at Stafford, and Anstey's at 
Youghal, cost many thousand pounds, and neither of them had 
any money to throw away. 

Allusion is made in the foregoing letter to incidents 
of political warfare which attracted much attention at 
the time. Lord Palmerston, in the earlier part of hi* 
career, and especially about the time of his vigorous 
action, in 1840, against Mehemet Ali, in despite of 
France, had to encounter attacks more venomous and 
more unscrupulous than often fall to the lot of a public 
man, however eminent. There went about the country 
a knot of men, half of them fanatical and the other t 


iftlf silly, who, holding meetings in our great towns, 
sailing pamphets, and gaining some of the provincial 
lewspapers, proclaimed the Foreign Secretary as a 
araitor to his country, and as having sold himself to 
Russia for hard money. If more recent instances of 
popular delusion were not too fresh in our minds to 
permit any excessive wonderment, we might well feel 
amazed that even a small section of their hearers should 
hare given ear to their assertions. But so it was ; and 
Lord Palmerston, however imperturbable by nature, felt 
bound to take counsel's opinion as to the propriety of 
filing criminal informations against the authors of these 
Kbels. This course, however, was, on consideration, 
not adopted ; and, indeed, it would have been giving 
Hie agitators an importance which they did not deserve. 
Yet a short time previously he had been obliged to take 
before the Court of Queen's Bench the publisher of the 
* Albion,' in the columns of which he had been accused 
tf using his official knowledge for stockjobbing pur- 
poses ; and he obtained from another newspaper, without 
legal proceedings, an apology for a suggestion that he 
itt concerned in a disreputable mining adventure 
thread. He received, therefore, his full share of the 
Aafts directed by political malice during the years 
while he was making his way to the unassailable position 
wlich he latterly occupied. 

But, returning to 1852, we find him describing to 
Us brother the state of parties during the pause be- 
tween the general election and the meeting of the new 
Parliament : — 

Brocket : September 17, 1852. 

Men seem generally disposed to wait to see what measures 
%e Government propose, and to deal with those measures 
Warding to their merits, and I think the chances are that 
o*ne of those measures will be deemed objectionable, and 
till be rejected by Parliament. It will then remain to be 
Sen whether such rejection will be considered by the Go- 
ernment a sufficient reason for resigning. The probability 
1 that Lord Derby will not easily take such a hint, but will 
tad his ground until he is forced to retire. His language 


is that his is the last Conservative Government, and that after 
him comes the Deluge. But if he begins to be beat, he will 
find it hard to get any fresh troops to join him, and out of hit- 
own corps he can draw little additional strength. When he if> 
forced to retire great difficulties will arise. John Russell 
clings pertinaciously to his former position of Prime Minister, 
and will not serve under any other chief. On the other hand, 
the Whig and Liberal party have greatly lost confidence in hi* 
capacity as a leader, and he would find it very difficult to form 
such a Government as would be strong enough to stand. I do 
not think the Peelites would join him. I certainly would not 
serve under him again, though I might serve with him under 
a third person. Thus he would be driven either to take back 
his old clique of Greys and Barings, of whom the country is 
tired, or to ally himself with Graham and the Radicals, of 
whom the country is afraid, and against him he would have all 
the supporters of the present Government, numbering abort 
290, the Peelites, about 50, and a certain number of memben 
who would be disposed to look to me, perhaps 20. This would 
make a majority against him, besides the general impression ill 
the country that he has not the qualities required for a fin* 
Minister. The way of avoiding these embarrassments would 
be to place Lansdowne at the head of the Government, but of 
present Johnny will not hear of serving under anybody. It i$ 
probable, however, that somehow or other this difficulty may 
be got over, and that thus a Liberal Government may l* 
formed, supposing always that Derby should not be able to 
maintain himself. However, time will show. 

So we have at last lost our great Duke. 1 Old as he waft/ 
and both bodily and mentally enfeebled by age, he still is a 
great loss to the country. His name was a tower of strength ^ 
abroad, and his opinions and counsel were valuable at home. 
No man ever lived or died in the possession of more unanimous 
love, respect, and esteem from his countrymen. 

I have been rather lucky this year on the turf, having had ^ 

only one horse (Buckthorn 2 ) in. training, and having won six * 

races with him. Some who have had six horses have only won. j 

one racei ] 

The Liberal party were now looking out for a policy 

and a leader. Lord John Eussell was discredited. 

1 Duke of Wellington. 

* Won the Ascot Stakes. He looked at one moment so oat of the 
race that, daring the running, 100 to 1 was offered against him. 


ord Palmerston had given too recent a blow. In a 
(tier, to which the following is a reply, Lord Fitz- 
illiam suggested the Marquis of Lansdowne as a 
oorible leader, although he alluded to his age as being 
gainst him, and referred to declarations made in the 
louse of Lords as to his wish for retirement. 

Lord Palmerston, as we have seen, had already 
bought of him as the best man for the post. 

C. G. : September 24, 1852. 
My dear Lord Mtzwilliam, — Seventy-two is certainly, as 
jou say, an advanced period of life, but if health and faculties 
m unimpaired, lapse of years can be no objection. Cardinal 
Usury was seventy-three when made Prime Minister ; and we 
m» now lamenting the loss of a man who continued in the 
tftive administration of an important office till the age of 
Ughty-fbur, 1 

Leave-takings, announced in Parliament, should be construed 
pith reference to circumstances, and they sometimes only mean 
the person who pronounces them does not intend again to 
himself in the particular and relative position from which 
i lias just been freed. But your previous question — unlike 
which are moved in Parliament — is a very practical one. 
doubt whether ' it is desirable at present to overthrow the 
Government.' To this I would add another doubt, 
ly, whether it is possible to do so ? I apprehend that 
are in the House of Commons many men who rank as 
and who differ from the supposed principles of the 
it Government, who, nevertheless, would not join in any 
at the opening of the session, the avowed object of which 
be to overthrow the present Government. Their motives, 
conceive, would be : first, that there is no existing party 
ttion which would at once present the elements of 
Government to succeed the present one ; and, secondly, 
in such a state of things, the best course to pursue is to 
the presant Government to explain their intended 
f t and to develop their proposed measures, and to deal 
that policy and those measures according to their intrinsic 
I own that such appears to me to be the best course. 
the present Government propose good measures, why should 
country not have the benefit of such measures 1 If the 

1 Duke of Wellington. 


measures they propose are bad, let them be rejected, ax 
the Government abide the consequences of their own 
of judgment and skill. It is indeed hard to imagine tha 
Government will be able to make good all the expectatio 
relief which they have held out to various classes of the 
munity ; and the chances seem to be that they will eu 
some defeats when these measures come to be discs 
Moreover, the composition of the Government is not one 
promises long duration without material changes. The Go 
ment contains two men of first-rate abilities, one in one H 
the other in the other — Derby and Disraeli; but it mi 
doubted whether the other members of the Cabinet are 
equal to sustaining the rude shock of parliamentary oo 
through a difficult session. What you say about or, 
changes is perfectly true. They ought not to be pro] 
unless they are really needed for the public good, and 
should not be launched by a Government as a clap-tra 
fancied popularity without any fair prospect of their 1 

I do not myself see any reason why we may not go on 
well without any such organic changes. It would, I thin 
an improvement (if there would be no obstacle in the del 
execution of such a measure^ if the present system of cont 
registration could be got rid of, and if the poor-rate rej 
were made also the register for the right of voting ; and ii 
a change were accompanied by some small diminution h 
qualification for electors, no harm would be done. I si 
not be surprised if the present Government were to pr 
some measures of this kind. It would not be out of chai 
for a Government of which one member proposed to give < 
militiaman a vote, and of which another member, on a m 
for Parliamentrry reform, talked very freely about the 
diency of emancipating the labouring classes. 

The great frankness of Lord Palmerston's chan 
comes out in the next letter. He remained on perf 
friendly terms with Lord J. Russell, but, as wi 
seen, he had not hesitated to tell him openly tha 
confidence in him, as a leader, was shaken, and thi 
would be unwilling, therefore, to serve under him a) 
This was all received in good part by the ez-Freo 
for offence can never be taken at an open expressu 
honest opinion, whether it be right or wrong. 


Broadlands : October, 1852. 

My dear Lansdowne, — The Duke and Duchess of Bedford 
ime to Brocket for a day while we were there ; and as I found 
Eram Melbourne that the Duke was desirous of knowing my 
frttlrngg ag to serving in any Government that might be formed 
by John Russell, I sought an opportunity of a conversation 
with him, and as he led to the subject, I spoke my mind to him 
freely and in detail. I said that my private and personal regard 
nd friendship for John Russell remain unaltered, and that I 
mst always entertain towards him individually those senti- 
nents of kindness which one feels for a private friend with 
whom one has been acting in public life for more than twenty 
fMurs. But I said that my political confidence in him is gone, 
fed that I would not again act under him as a chief who 
ihould be the arbiter of my official position or the guide of my 
political course. That as a political leader he is not to be 
depended upon : is infirm of purpose, changeable in his views, 
■aid perpetually swayed by influences which are known and 
felt only by their results. 

So much I said as to my political confidence in John Russell 
M a Prime Minister. In regard to my own feelings as to a 
^return to my former official dependence upon him, I said that 
the more and the longer I reflected upon his conduct towards 
w* last year, the more I felt those sentiments which induced 
mm at the time to write him a note to beg that he would not 
[■oppose from the quiet manner in which I took what he had 
ilone, that I did not feel that just indignation which his con- 
•fact must necessarily inspire. 

The letter here goes into details connected with his 
ftwnjgflql in December, 1851, which have already been 
quoted, and then continues : — 

I said to the Duke of Bedford that the upshot of all this 

*w that I could not again serve under John Russell, but that 

I should not object to serve with him on equal terms under a 

„ ftird person. But I said that indeed it seemed to me impos- 

. Ale that, in the, event of the present Government falling John 

" Swell should be able to form a Government ; that I do not 

Vrik the Peelites would join him ; and that he would therefore 

! live against him the two hundred and ninety who are reckoned 

* supporters of the present Government, the forty or fifty 

^eelites, and a certain number, however small, who are likely 


to ask what course I should under such circumstances j 
In conclusion, I said to the Duke that which indeed 
stated to him some weeks before — that in the present h 
up condition of parties it seems to me that you are the 
the most likely to reconcile and reunite the sections < 
Liberal party, and also to receive support from some mo 
men whose present tendencies would lead them to ra 
adherents of the existing Government. 

The Duke expressed himself pleased with my pe 
feelings towards John Russell, and acknowledged th 
manner in which, according to my own view of the mai 
had stated my own case. 

I do not think, however, that he seemed to be of oj 
that John Russell shares my conviction as to the imposs 
of his now forming another Government. 

Lord Lansdowne, however, pleaded age and < 
for repose in reply to those sections of the Liberal 
who called upon him to come forward and fill the bi 
Upon this Lord Palmerston remarks : — 

Broadlands : October 14, If 
I can easily understand that you should, after many 
of ministerial labour and confinement, prefer freedom t 
straint, but — 

When Honour calls, where'er she points the way, 
The sons of Honour follow and obey ; 

and if the course of events should render a sacrifice on 
part necessary, that sacrifice will undoubtedly be made. 

I should not be surprised, however, if Derby's Goven 
were to have more lire in it than people generally im 
Protection Derby will openly throw over, and if the me 
which he proposes are tolerably good they will be accepte 
any proposal of a vote of no confidence would probablj 
and if Derby would recruit a little more debating powei 
out of his own followers, which may not be impossib 
might be able to struggle on for some considerable tim 
there was an obvious prospect of forming a good L 
Government, all these resources would be too little for B 
but if there can be no Liberal Government but one 
John Russell, Derby may have a longer tenure of offici 
was at first imagined. 1 

1 To Lord Lansdowne, October 14, 1852. 


The new Parliament met for business on November 
L. The dissolution had little altered the balance of 
arties, so that the Government were still in a minority. 
he liberal leaders, as will be seen, had adjusted their 
iternal difficulties, and were prepared to form a Cabinet, 
' necessary, 

C. G. : November 17, 1852. 

My dear William, — I think the chances are that the 
Government will fall by their measures if they are measures 
& any magnitude and importance, because any such measures 
Bast involve changes in the distribution of taxes ; and though 
he persons who are to be lightened may like such changes, 
hey who are to be burthened will object, and the measures will 
nost likely be thrown out. If the measures are very small 
hey will disappoint the expectation which has been excited ; 
myhow, it seems likely that this Government will not last 
long, and now there is another formation ready to take their 
tkce. Lord Lansdowne would consent to be chief if asked 
by the Queen to do so. John Russell would take office under 
lansdowne, and would, moreover, if it were wished, go up to 
the House of Lords, and I should then be left to perform that 
honourable but irksome task of conducting the business of the 
Government in the House of Commons. In that case I should 
have the Home Office, and Johnny the Foreign. I should, in 
i&y case, much prefer the Home Office to going back to the 
immense labour of the Foreign Office. Ty ai ete, as the 
frenchman said of fox-hunting. The Peelites would form 
jart of such a Government, and we should have the support 
rf a good few of those who are now adherents of the present 
(Wernment. However, all this is as yet in the clouds ; one 
Amid not dispose of the bear till the bear is taken and slain, 
•ad one ought not to make a Government for the Queen till 
*e is quite sure what her intentions are upon that matter. 
I think, however, that this Government will sink under its 
Btm feebleness before Easter. 

The Austrians have distinguished themselves by declining 
o send anybody to the funeral of the Duke, and I am told 
hat our Queen is very angry with them. The papers say it is 
ie Emperor himself who took this decision ; and I am told he 
i quite a fanatic, sleeps on a hard mattress on the floor, stints 
imself in sleep, and mortifies the body in all ways. This is a 
toy ; an enlightened and sensible Emperor of Austria would 


be a great acquisition for Europe, though, to be sure, he woukt 
be a novelty. But the Austrians hate England and tha 
English nation, notwithstanding the civil compliments inter- 
changed between the Austrian Government and the Derbr 
Administration when Derby came into office last spring. Welt 
we can do without them, and I hope they can do without us. 
It is desirable for their own sakes that they should be able to 
do so, for help from England they are not very likely to get. 

The Queen's Speech at the opening of Parliament 
had been very ambiguous on the subject of Free Trade. 
J j the opinion of many it was studiously so ; and it was 
therefore considered necessary to elicit, without delay, 
a parliamentary declaration, in order to show to the 
world that a free-trade policy had been irrevocably 
adopted. Accordingly, on November 23, Mr. Charles 
Villiers moved a resolution which was so worded that 
the Government could not possibly accept it, and, there- 
fore, had, the House adopted it, the Ministry must at 
once have retired from office. It was, however, not the 
general wish to turn out the Government before they 
had proposed their Budget ; so Lord Palmerston came 
to the rescue, and proposed an amended resolution 
worded with more regard to Tory susceptibilities. The 
difference between the two resolutions was, that while 
they both unequivocally affirmed the doctrine of Free 
Trade and its permanent establishment, Lord Palmer- 
ston's did not compel those who agreed to it publicly 
to recant the private opinions which, at a former period, 
they may have honestly entertained. The Government 
accepted it, and it was carried by a large majority. 

This debate finally closed the discussions on Free 
Trade, which had for so many years proved the subject 
of controversy in Parliament. 

The result of the division in the House of Com- 
mons did not, however, deceive the Ministry as to the 
weakness of their position, and they naturally looked 
round to see how they could strengthen it. There was 
no time to lose ; so on the following day Mr. Disraeli 
made a formal proposal to Lord Palmerston to join Lord 


by's Government. He declined ; saying that he 
d not do so singly, and that the Peelites with 
>m he was then acting showed no disposition to 
roximate to the Government. The Ministry, there- 
, had to face without any new allies the battle over 
r Budget which Mr. Disraeli, as Chancellor of the 
thequer, introduced on December 3. The principal 
ures were, besides a diminution of the tea duties a 
iction of the malt tax, which created a large deficit, 
a doubling of the house tax, to supply the void. 
> farmers, expecting something better, did not ca ^ 
at the reduction made in their favour, while the 
nsfolk did care very decidedly about the increase 
le at their cost. The Budget was generally con- . 

ined, and, in spite of an energetic 'whip,' the £^ 

rernment were beaten by 19 in a very full House. 
ij accordingly resigned. 

oil. ii. S 




Lord Aberdeen was charged with the formation of a 
new Government, He at once sought the co-operation 
of Lord Palmer ston, who, at first, withheld it, being 
unwilling to share the responsibility of a Cabinet whose 
foreign policy, he anticipated, would be of a character 
to merit his disapproval. But he was indispensable. A 
general though undefined feeling among the public had 
already marked him out as the coming man. Lord 
Lansdowne therefore renewed Lord Aberdeen's solici- 
tations, and induced Lord Palmerston to reconsider his 
decision. He selected the Home Office as his depart- 
ment, and gives to his brother the following account of 
his feelings and motives: — 

C. G. : December 22, 1852. 

I have accepted the Home Office in the new Government 
When first Lansdowne and Aberdeen asked me to join the new 
Government I declined, giving as my reason that Aberdeen and 
I had differed so widely for twenty-five years on all questions of 
foreign policy that my joining an Administration of which he 
was to be the head would be liable to misconstruction both at 
home and abroad. But the next day Lansdowne came again 
and urged me strongly, and I found that the Foreign Office, 
which I had determined not myself in any case to take, would 
he held either by Clarendon or John Russell, whose well-estab- 
lished reputations for liberality would give a security in regaid 
to our foreign relations. 

Lansdowne's representations of the great importance, in the 
present state of things at home and abroad, that the new Govern- 
ment should be as strong in its fabric as the materials available 


"for the purpose can make it, determined me to yield to his advice 

and to accept the Home Office ; and the more I have thought 

the matter over, the better satisfied I have felt that I have 

acted right. The Foreign Office will be taken by John Russell, 

but if he finds the business too much for him, in addition to his 

employment as leader in the House of Commons, he will then 

give it up to Clarendon. The Home Office was my own choice ; 

I had long settled in my own mind that I would not go back to 

the Foreign Office, and that if I ever took any office it should 

be the Home. It does not do for a man to pass his whole life 

in one department, and the Home Office deals with the concerns 

of the country internally, and brings one in contact with one's 

Fellow-countrymen, besides which it gives one more influence in 

regard to the militia and the defences of the country. 

. This Government will combine almost all the men of talent 
ind experience in the House of Commons except Disraeli ; but 
the Opposition will be numerically strong, as they reckon about 
&0. A good many of these, however, will probably be disposed 
JO give the new Government a fair trial. 

And to Mr. Sulivan, his brother-in-law, he writes: — 

Carlton Gardens : December 24, 1852. 

On Tuesday I positively declined joining the new Government, 
irst to Lansdowne, who was nearly an hour talking to me, and 
ifterwards to Aberdeen, who came and offered me carte blanche 
m to departments; but on Wednesday morning Clarendon 
ame to tell me he had had the Foreign Office offered him, and 
hat he was disposed to accept it. That removed much of the 
Ejection which I had felt. When he left me, Lansdowne came 
igain earnestly to press me to take office ; and I at last con- 
tented to take the Home Office, the department which I had 
nentioned as the one I should have preferred if I had been 
rilling to join the new regiment. Reflection has satisfied me 
hat I have acted rightly. The state of the country in all its 
nterests, foreign and domestic, requires a Government as strong 
is -there are elements for making it ; and if my aid is thought 
*y Lansdowne and others likely to be useful, I ought not to let 
personal feelings stand in the way. As regards myself indi- 
idually, it must be borne in mind that when the Whigs and 
'eelites unite to form a Government and to support it, I 
bould, if I had persisted in standing aloof, have been left in a 
ttle agreeable political solitude. I am glad, therefore, that I 
are not adhered to my first determination ; and I am sure 



that the course which, on second thoughts, I have pursued is 
the best for the public interest and for my own comfort. 

There was a large body of men, however, who would 
have been only too glad to relieve Lord Palmerstonfrom 
the ' political solitude,' which he here mentions as the 
alternative to joining Lord Aberdeen's Government. 

The Tories were discontented with their House of 
Commons leader. They further had been so demo- 
ralised by recent party circumstances as to have come 
to doubt all political morality, and to regard statesmen 
as mere party swordsmen ; when, therefore, at the outset 
of the year they saw the Foreign Secretary summarily 
turned adrift by the Whig leader they began looking 
towards him with the same anxiety and yearning with 
which an Italian little state in the Middle Ages would 
have looked for some condotUere of good repute whowa* 
about to be out of employment. They would gladly 
have hailed him as their new chief had he been minded 
to join them. But between these three hundred and 
odd gentlemen and Lord Palmerston there was little 
common political creed; and the members of the Oppo- 
sition who indulged in such a dream as this only showed 
thereby how completely they misunderstood his position, 
his character, and his political principles. 

On December 27 the new Government appeared in 
their places in Parliament, when Lord Aberdeen, in the 
House of Lords, gave a sketch of its intended policy. 
With regard to foreign affairs, he said that it would 
i adhere to the principles which had been pursued to 
the last thirty years, and which consisted in respecting 
the rights of all independent states, while, at the same 
time, we asserted our own rights and interests; and 
above all, in an earnest desire to secure the general 
peace of Europe.' 

Considering that Lord Palmerston had been at the 
Foreign Office during more than half the period named, 
Lord Aberdeen was paying an indirect tribute to hi* 
policy. As for Lord Palmerston himself, he quickly 


settled down to his new duties, and writes thus to his 
brother : — 

Carlton Gardens : January 31, 1853. 

We (the Government) are now preparing for the renewal 
of the session on the 10th of this next month. We shall be 
strong on the Treasury bench, and I hope not weak in the 
division lobby. It is clear that if we were to be turned out, 
the only Government that could be put in our stead would be 
Derby's, and experience has proved that his Government could 
not stand. We may therefore expect that the moderate men 
who supported him will not be disinclined to give us a fair 
support, and it will be our business to deserve it. Though the 
Cabinet consists of men of various parties and shades of opinion, 
all having agreed to unite, will, I doubt not, unite to agree, 
and in that case we shall go on very well. 

We are labouring to place the country in a state of defence, 
and our only limit is the purse of the Chancellor of the Ex- 
chequer; but whatever may be at the bottom of the secret 
thoughts of the French Emperor, into whose bosom no man can 
dive, yet I see no reason to apprehend an immediate or even an 
early rupture with France ;. and if we have two years more of 
preparation allowed* us, we shall be in a good defensive position. 
In the meantime we do not allow that we are even now de- 
fenceless. The increase of navy, artillery, marines, and the 
Organisation of the militia, have placed us in a very different 
condition from that in which we stood two or three years ago. 

Napoleon's marriage seems to me a most sensible one. He 
had no chance of a political alliance of any value, or of sufficient 
importance to counterbalance the annoyance of an ugly or epi- 
leptic wife whom he had never seen till she was presented to 
lorn as a bride ; and he was quite right to take a wife whom 
he knew and liked. I admire the frankness with which he 
declares himself a parvenu, and the assertion of that truth, 
however it may shock the prejudices of Vienna and Petersburg, 
trill endear him to the bulk of the French nation. 

As Home Secretary Lord Palmerston astonished 
everybody except those who knew him well, by the vigi- 
lance, care, intelligence, and originality with which he 
discharged his duties. No details were too small if only 
they were important to those concerned. He paid a 
visit to Parkhurst Prison, and wrote a Memorandum on 


the ventilation of the cells with just as much zeal and 
thoroughness as if he were conducting a Government 
measure in full view of the country* A standing monu- 
ment of this period of his career is the system of grant- 
ing tickets of leave to convicts. Hazardous as the 
experiment was at that time considered, it proved 
successful, and solved the difficulty which stared us in 
the face when the Colonies declined any longer to allow 
us to shoot our refuse on their shores. It devolved on 
him to find a substitute for transportation, which had 
become no longer available, and he carried through the 
House of Commons a Bill constituting the new system 
of secondary punishment, which, in its main features, 
is still in force. 

Many other useful measures owed their birth to his 
activity during the two years that he was at the Home 
Office. The abatement of the smoke nuisance in the 
metropolis, whereby to a great extent its atmosphere 
was purified — the cessation of intramural interments, of 
which people could only have been induced to tolerate 
the evils by the influence of long custom — the extension 
of the Factory Acts, 1 and the more general holding <rf 
winter assizes for the trial of prisoners awaiting gaol 
delivery, were among the most prominent of the un- 
doubted boons which his practical mind devised for the 
benefit of the country. 

He was especially happy in his manner of receiving 
those numerous deputations which always converge 
towards the Home Office. Deputation has been wittily 
defined as c a noun of multitude which signifies many, 
but does not signify much/ However, accurate tWs 
may be as a definition, it would be a grave error to 
undervalue the importance to a minister of possessing 
the art of listening patiently, and giving a straight- 

1 The ten and a half hours of work were by existing Acts to be be- 
tween six a.m. and six p.m. This was a great guarantee against evasion 
of the law. It was found, however, that the wording of the Acts did 
not extend this limitation to children, but only to young persons* 
Lord Palmcrston warmly took up the cause of the children when thU 
was brought to his notice, and rectified the law. 


forward though civil € No/ Lord Falmerston had it in 
a notable degree. His prompt but cordial refusal was 
often more palatable than another man's cold and 
doubtful acquiescence. 1 

He alludes to some of his work in the following 
letter : — 

C. G. : April 3, 1853. 
My dear "William, — It is now a long while, I fear, since I 
last wrote to you, but ever since the meeting of Parliament I 
have been living as people do during a contested election, talked 
to from morning till night, and with no time to do anything. 
The mere routine business of the Home Office, as far as that 
consists in daily correspondence, is very far lighter than that of 
the Foreign Office, but, during a session of Parliament, the 
whole day of the Secretary of State, up to the time when he 
must go to the House of Commons, is taken up by deputa- 
tions of all kinds and interviews with Members of Parliament, 
militia colonels, <fcc. But on the whole it is a much easier 
office than the Foreign, and, in truth, I really would not, on 
any consideration, undertake again an office so unceasingly 
laborious every day of the year as that of Foreign Affairs. I 
shall be able to do some good in the Home Office. I am 
shutting up all the graveyards in London, a measure authorised 
by an Act of last session, and absolutely required for preserva- 
tion of the health of the town. There is a company who are 
going to make two great tunnels under London, filly feet below 
the surface, one north, the other south, of the Thames, running 
nearly alongside the river, beginning some way above the town, 
and ending some way below it. These tunnels are to be the 
receptacles into which all the sewers and drains of London are 
to he discharged, so that nothing is to go into the Thames, and 
the contents of these tunnels are, at the point of termination, 
to he dried and converted into manure to be sold to agricul- 
turists as home-made guano. I shall try to compel, at least, 
the tall chimneys to burn their own smoke, and I should like 
to put down beershops, and to let shopkeepers sell beer like oil, 

1 His reception of certain inhabitants of Rugely, who wanted a new 
name for their town, which had acquired an unenviable notoriety owing 
to its having been the residence of the poisoner Palmer, gives a 
specimen of the way in which he could deal with requests that could 
not be treated seriously. He got rid of them by offering his own name 
ind asking how Palmerstown would suit them. 


and vinegar, and treacle, to be carried home and drunk with 
wives and children. 

Our session will be long but not dangerous. We shall have 
to renew the income tax and the East India Charter. These 
and other matters will take time, but I do not see that any 
other Government is, at present, possible. The last Cabinet has 
been too much discredited to be put back again, and Derby, hav- 
ing failed in his experiment to make a Cabinet out of men who 
knew nothing of public business, would scarcely like to make 
another trial with a new lot equally ignorant and incapable. 
Besides, if we were beat by mere numbers, there would be 
the resource of a dissolution, to which I conclude we should 
have recourse rather than at once give up our posts. We may 
have some difficulty next year about Parliamentary Reform, 
but enough for the year are the troubles thereof. As yet> 
nothing can be more harmonious than our Coalition Cabinet. 

I dare say you have heard at Naples much about our har- 
bouring conspiring refugees. The answer I make to those who 
complain of those matters here is, that a handful of refugees in 
London cannot arrange a revolution in a foreign country, and 
send out the plan to l>e executed off-hand. They must, in the 
first place, have associates and instruments many thousand in 
number in the country to which the plan is to be applied, 
because a revolution cannot be acted by a handful of men. 
They must have much local knowledge to make their arrange- 
ments, and this knowledge, bearing upon circumstances which 
vary from day to day, is not possessed by men in London, and 
can only be furnished by men on the spot. Therefore these 
London conspirators can do nothing without the co-operation of 
a great number of people in the foreign country, with whom 
they must have long and detailed communication either by 
letters or by messengers. But what are the Governments 01 
the foreign countries about if they cannot, by their police and 
their passport system, find out the proceedings of the large 
mass of these conspirators who are in their own country, and if 
they cannot intercept the letters or discover and arrest the 
messengers 1 It is plain that the real and practical conspiracy 
is worked out in the foreign country and not in England ; and 
these foreign Governments try to throw upon us a blame which 
really belongs to them, and if arms and ammunition are sent or 
provided, it is the foreign Government that ought to be able to 
find that out. 

The country generally is highly prosperous, trade flourish- 


g, the revenue good, and the emigration having gone just far 
xragh to raise wages to a proper amount without making 
bour inconveniently scarce. The Irish emigration will, I 
ipe, go on, and it would be a good thing if a larger number 
ould go off to America. The priests are, of course, furious, 
toy emigrant is so much out of their pocket. 1 
I am very glad that Clarendon 2 has got the Foreign Office, 
e will do the business well, and keep up the character and 
gnity of the country. 

The cholera appeared this year in the United King- 
loi, and in the autumn the Presbytery of Edinburgh 
xrte, through their Moderator, to Lord Palmerston, 
king whether, under the circumstances, a national 
it would be appointed on Royal authority. The Home 
cretary, like Cromwell, who supplemented his exhor- 
ion to his men to put their trust in God by a caution 
keep their powder dry, sent the following answer : — 

Whitehall : October 19, 1853. 
Sir, — I am directed by Viscount Palmerston to acknowledge 
receipt of your letter of the 15th inst., requesting, on behalf 
the Presbytery of Edinburgh, to be informed whether it is 
posed to appoint a day of national fast on account of the 
itataon of the cholera, and to state that there can be no doubt 
t manifestations of humble resignation to the Divine Will,, 
I sincere acknowledgments of human unworthiness, are 
er more appropriate than when it has pleased Providence 
afflict mankind with some severe visitation ; but it does not 
iear to Lord Palmerston that a national fast would be suit- 
e to the circumstances of the present moment. 
The Maker of the Universe has established certain laws of 
bore for the planet in which we live, and the weal or woe of 
mkind depends upon the observance or the neglect of those 
vs. One of those laws connects health with the absence of 
386 gaseous exhalations which proceed from over-crowded 
man beings, or from decomposing substances, whether animal 
vegetable ; and those same laws render sickness the almost 

1 Lord Palmerston for many years spent a large portion of hia 
ih income in enabling those of his tenants to emigrate who wished 
do 80. 
* He had succeeded Lord John Russell. 


inevitable consequence of exposure to those noxious influences. 
But it has at the same time pleased Providence to place it 
within the power of man to make such arrangements as will 
prevent or disperse such exhalations so as to render them harm' 
less, and it is the duty of man to attend to those laws of nature 
and to exert the faculties which Providence has thus given to 
man for his own welfare. 

The recent visitation of cholera, which has for the moment 
been mercifully checked, is an awful warning given to the 
people of this realm that they have too much neglected their 
duty in this respect, and that those persons with whom it rested 
to purify towns and cities, and to prevent or remove the causes 
of disease, have not been sufficiently active in, regard to such 
matters. Lord Palmerston would, therefore, suggest that the 
best course which the people of this country can pursue to - 
deserve that the further progress of the cholera should be 
stayed, will be to employ the interval that will elapse betweea 
the present time and the beginning of next spring in planning 
and executing measures by which those portions of their towns 
and cities which are inhabited by the poorest classes, and 
which, from the nature of things, must most need purification 
and improvement, may be freed from those causes and sources | 
of contagion which, if allowed to remain, will infallibly hreei J 
pestilence and be fruitful in death, in spite of all the prayenH 
and fastings of a united but inactive nation. When man hac I 
done his utmost for his own safety, then is the time to invoke*! 
the blessing of Heaven to give effect to his exertions. * : 

I am, Sir, your obedient servant, 

Henry Fitzboy. , 

This letter created a great stir, and some indigna*> 
tion among certain sections of the community; but bV 
was, after all, the embodiment of common sense. B. • 
reminded those in authority that it was their boundta. 
duty not to neglect the teachings of science or the spirit 
of practical Christianity. It suggested that until thef, 
had fulfilled their duty to their neighbour, they couflj 
not lift up clean hands in prayer and fisting. Thfc 
lesson which it thus sought to inculcate on the munici- 
pal authorities of Scotland was greatly needed. Sani- 
tary laws were at that time even less known and lefll* 
cared for than now ; and in the terror excited by the t 


ions appearance of this terrible disease, the fact 
erlooked that the conditions under which it was 
ped and diffused were under human control, and 
rat of the negligence and folly of individuals and 
.uthorities. To substitute a national fast for the 
ount duty of cleansing the drains and purifying 
•eets, would have been a strange misunderstand- 

the Divine Will, as revealed in the operations of 
1 causes. 

e free wits of the day averred that Lord Palmer- 
ad brought into his new office the proclivities of 
•mer department, and that in his answer to the 
iierj he treated Heaven as a * foreign power.' 
ike was, however, wide of the mark, if it meant 
nuate any irreverence for sacred things on his 
s he never either showed such a feeling himself, 
>uraged its manifestation in others. 
are was yet another occasion, about this time, 
owing to a speech, he found himself made into a 
jical target. In the winter of 1854, presiding 
bourers 5 meeting at Romsey, he told them that 
ould find that all children were born good, and 
lly bad education and bad associations corrupted 
ind. There might be exceptions, as there are 
orn physically defective; but that the heart of 
r as naturally good, and that it depended upon 
g whether that goodness, implanted at birth, 

continue to display itself. This apparent piece 
3sy as to the doctrine of c original sin ' greatly 

the clerical world, appearing as it did at the 
ason. One leading organ had an amusing but 
3hful article, saying that if Lord Palmerston had 

nurse he would have known better. 'If'any- 
it continued, ' could teach a child to smile away 
rs, to bear abstinence with fortitude, rebukes 
sttience, and inward commotions with grace, Lord 
•ston is the man to do it ; nevertheless we feel 
at he would soon find he had as difficult subjects 

with as he ever found in perverse princes and 


the evil associations of Courts.' But others were not 
disposed to deal with it so lightly, and discussed it very 
gravely. The truth being all the time that the Premier 
had not the remotest idea of touching upon such an 
abstruse topic as ' original sin,' but was talking to la- 
bouring men about those ordinary features of generally 
good or generally bad conduct which could be evident 
to every one of them. 

One of the provisions of the Act forbidding intra-' 
mural interment gave power to the Home Secretary to 
make exceptions in cases which he might deem fit- 
Lord Palmerston, however, appears to have deemed none 
fit, as may be gathered from the following answer to ft 
request for special permission in the case of a deceased 
dignitary of the Church : — 

Broadlands : January 3, 1855. 

My dear Stanley, 1 — I am sorry to say that I have already 
felt myself obliged to decline compliance with the request con- 
tained in the enclosed letter. The practice of burying deal 
bodies under buildings in which living people assemble in la*gfc 
numbers is a barbarous one, and ought to be at once and fir 
ever put an end to, and I have made this a general role in afl 
cases. But a rule is no rule if partial exceptions are made; 
the rule then degenerates into an invidious selection of particular 
persons for its application, and other particular persons for'til 
relaxation. ■* 

And why, pray, should archbishops and bishops, and deft* 
and canons, be buried under churches if other persons are not J 
to be so? What special connection is there between church 
dignities and the privilege of being decomposed under the feet 
of survivors 1 Do you seriously mean to imply that a soul it 
more likely to go to heaven because the body which it inhabitel 
lies decomposing under the pavement of a church instead of 
being placed in a churchyard 't 

If commemoration is what is wanted, a monument maybe, 
placed in a church though the body is in the burial-ground} 
but why cannot the monument be equally well erected in tkt 
consecrated burial-ground ? 

As to what you say about pain to feelings by shutting up of 
burial-grounds, that is perfectly true. I am quite aware tW 

1 Lord Stanley of Alderley. 


be measure is necessarily attended with pain to feelings which 
xnte respect, as well as to pressure upon pecuniary interests 
rhich are not undeserving of consideration. But no great 
neasnre of social improvement can be effected without some 
msh temporary inconvenience to individuals, and the necessity 
rf the case justifies the demand for such sacrifices. To have 
ittempted to make the application of the new system gradual 
would have reduced it to a nullity. England is, I believe, the 
only country in which, in these days, people accumulate putre- 
fying dead bodies amid the dwellings of the living ; and as to 
faying bodies under thronged churches, you might as well put 
ttem under libraries, drawing-rooms, and dining-rooms. 

During the first year of his renewed tenure of office 
h very nearly parted from his colleagues. In the 
4 Annual Register ' for 1853 occurs this passage : — 

On the 16th of December an important ministerial crisis 
[Hg occasioned by the announcement that Viscount Palmerston 
ikd resigned Ins office. His resignation, however, was not 
fteoepted, and, after an interval of some days' suspense, the 
tofale lord was prevailed upon to withdraw it. The opponents 
■f the Government asserted that Lord Palmerston's secession 
fcum office was occasioned by a difference of opinion on his part 
« to the policy of the Cabinet upon the Eastern Question. On 
he other hand, it was strenuously contradicted by the adherents 
fthe Ministry; but as all explanation upon the subject was 
ecHned in Parliament, the motive for a step so dangerous to 
be stability of the Earl of Aberdeen's Cabinet must remain 
latter for conjecture. 

I quote a letter to his brother-in-law, the Eight 
Jon. Laurence Sulivan, which states the case : — 

C. G. : December 19, 1853. 

The state of the matter is plain and simple. I told Aberdeen 

od I^uisdowne last year, when I joined the Government, that 

[ felt great doubts as to my being able to concur in the plan of 

Parliamentary reform which John Russell might propose this 

The other day I was put on the Committee of Cabinet to 
irepare the plan. John Russell stated his scheme. I wrote 
o hi™ next day to state my objections. I re-stated them 


verbally in the Committee, and stated them again t 
Cabinet when John Russell explained his scheme t 
Cabinet. I stated them in a private interview afterwar 
two occasions, to Aberdeen. I stated them afterwards t 
in writing. In reply to that communication, I was firs 
by him that he would communicate with the Queen az 
colleagues. He then afterwards wrote me word that h 
communicated with John Russell and Graham ; that the 
my objections were inadmissible; and that he concurr 
their decision. I had then nothing left for it but to r 
My office is too closely connected with Parliamentary ch 
to allow me to sit silent during the whole progress of a R 
Bill through Parliament ; and I could not take up a Bill i 
contained material things of which I disapproved, and ast 
fight it through the House of Commons, to force it oi 
Lords, and to stand upon it at the hustings. I am soi 
leave an office in which I took interest, and political asso 
whom I like ; but I could not do otherwise. 

The Times says there has been no difference in the Ca 
about Eastern affairs. This is an untruth ; but I felt tl 
would have been silly to liave gone out because I conic 
have my own way about Turkish aflairs, seeing that my pre 
in the Cabinet did good, by modifying the views of those * 
policy I thought bad. 

What were the * differences ' on Turkish affairs 
be seen later on, when we come to the Eastern (J 
tion; but they concerned the moving of onr flee 
to the scene of conflict. However, Lord Palmei 
withdrew his resignation, as is shown by the 
letter : — 

C. G. : December 25, 18) 
I remain in the Government. I was much and str 
pressed to do so for several days by many of the membe 
the Government, who declared that they were no parti 
Aberdeen's answer to me, and that they considered al 
details of the intended Reform measure as still open to 
cussion. Their earnest representations, and the kno*? 
that the Cabinet had on Thursday taken a decision on Tn 
aflairs in entire accordance with opinions which I had 
unsuccessfully pressed upon them, decided me to withdra 
resignation, which I did yesterday. 

Of course, what I say to you about the Cabinet decisi 


Turkish affairs is entirely for yourself, and not to be mentioned 

anybody. But it is very important, and will give the allied 
quadrons the command of the Black Sea. 

The French ambassador rejoiced at the return of 
Hie Home .Secretary to the Cabinet. As soon as he 
heard that the resignation was withdrawn, he wrote to 
ann : — 

1 An de"but de la campagne que nous allons faire ensemble, 
fat un grand confort pour moi et une grande garantie pour 
Ifatpereur que de vous savoir Tame des conseils de notre allie. 
•Totre concours d'ailleurs pese d'un poids tres-reel dans la 
Wlance, et on salt a Paris en apprecier toute la valeur. 

Abroad as well as at home Lord Palmerston was 
Regarded as the backbone of the Ministry. 







It can hardly be doubted that the prospects of peace 
were darkened during the eventful preliminaries 
1853 by the fact of Lord Palmerston's absence from tha 
Foreign Office. He had won a character in Europe fi» 
being resolute, and was regarded as the embodiments 
English pugnacity. That a statesman of his undou 
prestige should at this crisis in foreign affairs be 
gated to the Home Office meant, in the opinion of tW 
adversaries of England, that his policy was at a discount 
and that the tide of national spirit was ebbing w 
had formerly floated him through so many foreign 
culties. Lord Palmerston, all the same, was not 
thoroughly engrossed by questions of health, police, 
local administration as to view with any indifference 
dispute between Russia and Turkey. On the contraijj 
he watched every turn with the keenest interest, and 
held himself not only entitled but bound to evince Mi 
active concern in the progress of the negotiations. 

Many a man, ousted from his old post, would haTfr 
shown, or at any rate would have felt, some slight jea- 
lousy towards the person who had been preferred to thai 
Lord Palmerston, so far from being influenced by ai^ 
such feeling or indulging in any carping criticism, 
frankly acknowledged that Lord Clarendon was 
more fit Minister to be at the Foreign Office at this mo- 
ment. His reasons for saying so may be gleaned from 


bllowing extract from a letter to the Foreign Secre- 

admired greatly your writhing letter, but I did not like 
f too much in its praise at the Cabinet, for fear that by so 
I might lead others to think that it was too strong. I 
3sure you that it is a great comfort and satisfaction to me 
ow the conduct of our foreign relations is in such able 
i as yours, and your administration of your important 
tment is attended with this great advantage to the 
ry, that, from a variety of circumstances, you can say 

things which could not so easily have been said or done 

[e hated war as much as any man, bat he hated 
liation more; and he thoroughly understood the 
wter of the adversary against whom England and 
ce were entering the diplomatic lists in a struggle 
b. he very soon saw involved far more than the mere 
dons immediately at issue. He thus describes the 
. tactics adopted by Eussia in any acts of aggres- 

j policy and practice of the Russian Government has 
s been to push forward its encroachments as fast and as 
. the apathy or want of firmness of other Governments 
. allow it to go, but always to stop and retire when it was 
vith decided resistance, and then to wait for the next 
rable opportunity to make another spring on its intended 

1 In furtherance of this policy, the Russian Govern- 
has always had two strings to its bow — moderate language 
isinterested professions at Petersburg and at London; 

aggression by its agents on the scene of operations. If 
ggression succeed locally, the Petersburg Government 
i them as a fait accompli which it did not intend, but 
b, in honour, recede from. If the local agents fail, they 
3avowed and recalled, and the language previously held is 
ed to as a proof that the agents have overstepped their 
ctions. This was exemplified in the Treaty of Unkiar- 
ei, and in the exploits of Simonivitch and Vikovitch in 
* Orloff succeeded in extorting the Treaty of Unkiar- 

1 To Lord Clarendon, July 31, 1863. 
j. II. T 


Skelessi from the Turks, and it was represented as a sadden 
thought, suggested by the circumstances of the time and place, 
and not the result of any previous instructions ; but having 
been done, it could not be undone. On the other hand, Simoni- 
vitch and Vikovitch failed in getting possession of Herat, in 
consequence of our vigorous measures of resistance ; and as 
they failed, and wlhen they had failed, they were disavowed and 
recalled, and the language previously held at Petersburg was 
appealed to as a proof of the sincerity of the disavowal, although 
no human being with two ideas in his head could for a moment 
doubt that they had acted under specific instructions. 1 

As soon as the question of the ' Holy Places ' had 
been settled, through the intervention of Sir Stratford 
Canning, Eussia had put forward her claim to a Pro- 
tectorate over the Greek Church in Turkey. On the 
refusal of this demand by the Sultan, Prince Menschi- 
koff left Constantinople, and, on July 2, the Bussum 
army crossed the Pruth and occupied the Danubian 
Principalities. The combined English and French 
fleets were at Besika Bay, at the entrance to the Dar- 
danelles. Lord Palmerston was meanwhile writing to 
the Premier as follows : — 

C. G. : July 4, 1853. 

I quite agree with you that we ought to try whether we can 
devise any proposal which, without involving any departure by 
the Sultan from the ground of independence on which he has 
taken his stand, might satisfy every just claim which the 
Emperor can put forward. In the meantime, however, I hope 
you will allow the squadrons to be ordered to go up to the 
Bosphorus as soon as it is known at Constantinople that the 
Russians have entered the Principalities, and to be further at 
liberty to go into the Black Sea, if necessary or useful for the 
protection of Turkish territory. 

The advantages of such a course seem to be — 

1st. That it would encourage and assist the Turks in thoa 
defensive arrangements and organisations which tb 
present crisis may give the Turkish Govemmen 
facilities for making, and the benefit of which, i 

1 To Lord Clarendon, May 22, 1863. 


strengthening Turkey against attack, will continue 
after the crisis is over. 

2ndly. It would essentially tend to prevent any further 
inroad on Turkish territory in Europe or in Asia, and 
it is manifest that any such further inroad would 
much increase the difficulties of a settlement. 

3rdly. It would act as a wholesome check upon the Em- 
peror and his advisers, and would stimulate Austria 
and Prussia to increased exertions to bring the Russian 
Government to reason. 

4thly. It would relieve England and France from the dis- 
agreeable, and not very creditable, position of waiting 
without venturing to enter the back door as friends, 
while the Russians have taken forcible possession of 
the front hall as enemies. 

If these orders are to be given, I would suggest that it is 
very important that they should be given without delay, so 
that we may be able, when these matters are discussed this 
wek in Parliament, to say that such orders have been sent off; 
af course they would at the same time be communicated to the 
Russian Government. 

I am confident that this country expects that we should 
pursue such a course, and I cannot believe that we should 
receive anything but support in pursuing it from the party now 
in Opposition. 

Lord Aberdeen replied, that although the invasion 
rf the Principalities was an indefensible act, and one 
that gave to every European Power a right of inter- 
ference, still, as the Emperor had made no declaration 
af war, but, on the contrary, notified that he would not 
make war, it became very doubtful how far it would be 
justifiable for our fleet to violate the treaty of 1841 by 
passing the Dardanelles. As to Lord Palmerston's 
assertion of the general approval which a bold course 
irould receive, Lord Aberdeen concluded his letter by a 
characteristic paragraph to the effect that in a case of 
ihis kind he dreaded popular support, just as on some 
)ccasion, when the Athenian assembly vehemently 
tpplauded Alcibiades, he asked if he had said anything 
Particularly foolish. 

T 2 



Meanwhile the representatives of the four Powers, 
England, France, Austria, and Prussia, were conferring 
in the Austrian capital and drawing up a document, 
which soon became known to Europe under the name 
of the ' Vienna Note/ It was an abortive attempt to 
reconcile conflicting views. The English Cabinet were 
busy on a similarly hopeless task : — 

C. G. : July 7, 1853. 

My dear John Russell, — The Cabinet yesterday agreed pro- 
visionally to an amended draft of Convention to be proposed 
for Russia and Turkey, simply renewing the engagements of 
Kainardjy and Adrianople without any extension. This was 
to be communicated first for approval to the French Govern- 
ment, and, if finally agreed to, it was proposed that it should 
be sent by Vienna to Constantinople, and, if not strongly 
objected to by the Porte, to be returned to Vienna, and to be 
sent on thence to Petersburg with any recommendation which 
the Austrian Government might be inclined to give. This 
Convention made no mention of the Holy Places, because the j 
French would not agree to a Convention between Russia and 
Turkey on that matter* All this is very well for effect and for 
a Blue Book, but, in my opinion, the course which the Emperor 
has pursued on these matters from his first overtures for a 
partition of Turkey, and especially the violent, abusive, and 
menacing language of his last manifesto, seem to show that he 
has taken his line, and that nothing will satisfy him but com- 
plete submission on the part of Turkey ; and we ought, there- 
fore, not to disguise from ourselves that he is bent upon a 
stand-up fight. 

I tried again to persuade the Cabinet to send the squadrons 
up to the Bosphorus, but failed; I was told that Stratford and 
La Cour have powers to call for them. This is, no douht, 
stated in public despatches, but we all know that he has been 
privately desired not to do so. I think our position, waiting 
timidly and submissively at the back door while Russia i* 
violently, threateningly, and arrogantly forcing her way into 
the house, is unwise with a view to a peaceful settlement, and 
derogatory to the character, and standing, and dignity of the 
two Powers. I think that when pressed on this point ; as of 
course we shall be in both Houses, we shall have no good 
answer or explanation to give. We cannot say that the pr°* 
vinces are not parts of the Turkish empire, because treaties 


lave made them so, and it is as such that Nicholas seizes them, 
as a way of compelling the Porte to submit to his demands. 

We cannot say that Turkey is at peace, because no 
country is at peace when important parts of its territory are 
invaded as a means of coercion, with a threat of further advance 
if stubbornness and blindness should make such a step, in the 
opinion of the invader, necessary. We cannot deny that the 
presence of our squadrons in the Bosphorus would greatly 
encourage the Porte, greatly discourage insurrections in any part 
of Turkey, and greatly tend to make the Emperor pause. The 
only reason we can give for our inactivity must be a yielding to 
minnow's advice and a fear of displeasing the Emperor. But 
these motives ought to have led us to leave Turkey to her fate. 
Words may properly be answered by words, but acts should be 
replied to by acts ; and the entrance of the Russians as invaders 
into the Turkish territory ought to be followed and replied to by 
the entrance of the squadrons into the Bosphorus as protectors. 
Much, however, of the effect of such a measure must depend 
on the promptitude of its execution, and it would have this 
advantage that, while it indicated spirit and determination on 
the part of England and France, it could not by any perversion 
he represented as an act of hostility against Russia. We 
should be relieved from much embarrassment in the approach- 
ing debate if we could say that orders for this purpose had 
actually been sent, and the actual advance of the squadrons 
ought surely to accompany any overtures made to Russia. 

The Russian Government now addressed a despatch, 
to its diplomatic agents, the burden of which was to the 
effect that the occupation of the Principalities was in 
answer to the presence of the British and French fleets 
outside the Dardanelles, and would only cease when 
they retired. 

In the following Memorandum, sent round by Lord 
Palmerston to the members of the Cabinet, he states 
how he would wish to meet this declaration : — 

C. G. : July 12, 1853. 
The Circular of Count Nesselrode, dated July 2, and pub - 
lished in the newspapers of this morning, shows how imper- 
fectly we have understood the character of the Russian Govern- 
ment, and how entirely thrown away upon that Government 


lias been the excessive forbearance with which England and 
France have acted. But the result might have been foreseen. 
It is in the nature of men whose influence over events and 
whose power over others are founded on intimidation, and kept 
up by arrogant assumptions and pretensions, to mistake for- 
bearance for irresolution, and to look upon inaction and hesita- 
tion as symptoms of fear, and forerunners of submission. 

Thus it has been with Russia on the one hand and England 
and France on the other. If the two Powers had acted with 
that energy, decision, and promptitude which the occasion 
required ; if when Menschikoff began to threaten, the two squad- 
rons had been sent to the neighbourhood of the Dardanelles, 
and if the Russian Government had been plainly told that the 
moment a Russian soldier set foot on Turkish territory, or as 
soon as a Russian ship-of-war approached with hostile intentions 
the Turkish coast, the combined squadrons would move up to the 
Bosphorus, and, if necessary, operate in the Black Sea, there 
can be little doubt that the Russian Government would have 
paused in its course, and things would not have come to the 
pass at which they have now arrived. But the Russian 
Government has been led on step by step by the apparent 
timidity of the Government of England, and reports artfully 
propagated that the British Cabinet had declared that it would 
have la paix & tout prix have not been sufficiently contradicted 
by any overt acts. The result has now been that the Cabinet 
of St. Petersburg, not content with bullying Turkey, threatens 
and insults England and France, and arrogantly pretends to 
forbid the ships-of-war of those Powers from frequenting the 
waters of another Power over whose waters Russia bas no 
authority whatever, and who has invited those ships into those 
waters specifically to protect it against Russian aggression. 

It is the robber who declares that he will not leave the 
house until the policeman shall have first retired from the 

The position of England and France was already sufficiently 
humiliating, but this insolent pretension, published to all Europe 
even before it was communicated to us, seems to me to make 
that position no longer tenable consistently with a due regard 
to the honour and character of this country. 

I would therefore beg to submit, and to place my opinion 
thus on record, that orders should forthwith be sent to the two- 
squadrons to go up to the Bosphorus, and that the Russian 
Government should be informed that, although we had not 


intended that this move should have taken place without some 
fresh incident, or some more urgent request from the Porte, yet 
after the inadmissible pretension put forward in Count Nessel- 
rode's note, to dictate to us as to the movements of our fleet, 
we had no alternative left but to station that fleet at the heart 
of that empire whose integrity and independence have been 
unwarrantably threatened by a Russian invasion of its terri- 


Lord Aberdeen, on the other hand, hoping and be- 
lieving that the form of Convention between Eussia and 
Turkey, which had been prepared by France and England, 
would be accepted, and that peace would thus be main- 
tained, considered that Count Nesselrode's Circular 
should only be met by a grave expostulation. * When, 
he added, ' the four Powers simultaneously advised the 
Porte not to regard the entrance of the Russian troops 
into the Principalities as a casus belli, it was not that 
they attached any weight to the declaration of the 
Emperor that he did not intend to make war upon 
Turkey, or that they entertained any doubt of an act of 
Peal hostility having been committed, but they wished 
to accept his declaration so far as to preserve in their 
Dim hands the means of negotiating with greater hopes 
tf success than if the utmost extremity of war had been 
proclaimed.' Lord Clarendon also shared Lord Aber- 
deen's views. 

Lord Palmerston acquiesced, with reservations, in 
the Premier's decision. He said : — 

I do not think that we advised the Porte not to consider 
the invasion of the Principalities a casus belli, A casus belli, if 
1 understand the term, means a case which would justify war. 
Now we have told the Porte that the invasion of the Princi- 
palities would justify war on the part of Turkey against Russia, 
hut we advised the Sultan, on grounds of prudence and as a 
question of strategy, not to exercise his right and to send an 
a nny to fight at a disadvantage beyond the Danube. It seems 
^ me, therefore, that we have told the Sultan that the invasion 
°f his territory is a casus belli, but that he would do best by 


standing on the defensive. As to the fleet, I acquiesce in your 
reasoning, and, on consideration, I admit that, as we have 
launched proposals for a peaceful arrangement, it would be 
better not to endanger the negotiation by throwing into it any 
fresh element of difficulty ; and I am, therefore, prepared to 
share the responsibility of submitting even to insult rather than 
afford to the quibbling and pettifogging Government with 
which we have to deal any pretext arising out of our course 
for refusing terms of accommodation unobjectionable in them- 
selves. 1 

Parliament was prorogued, with an expression of 
hope, in the Speech from the Throne, that the dispute 
would yet be arranged without recourse to arms. Lord 
Falmerston, as soon as he was released from the House 
of Commons, went down to Derbyshire to open the 
Melbourne Athenaeum, on which occasion he gave an 
address on the educational facilities provided by such 
institutions. This was very proper for a Home Sec- 
retary, although, in his character of ex-Foreign Secre- 
tary, it was abroad that his eyes were fixed, while he 
was in close correspondence with his colleagues, stimu- 
lating each in turn to adopt a bold tone as to the events 
then taking place. To Mr. Sidney Herbert, Secretary 
at War, he writes, in September, from Balmoral, 
whither he had gone in attendance on the Queen : — 

Balmoral : September 21, 1858. 
The question between Russia and Turkey seems, as you say> 
to be in an unsatisfactory and unpromising state, and yet it lies 
in a nutshell, and its solution depends upon honest intentions 
and plain dealing on the part of Russia. What is it the 
Emperor wants ? Why will he not plainly tell us what it is! 
Does he want merely what all of us want — namely, that the 
Christians in the Turkish empire shall be safe from oppression, 
vexation, and injury? If that is what he wants, let him begin 
by himself setting the example, and let him, by evacuating the 
Principalities, relieve the Christian inhabitants of that part of 
the Turkish empire from the complicated and various miseries 
which the occupation of their country by a Russian army inflicts 
upon them. Beyond that, let him be satisfied, as we all are, 

1 To Lord Aberdeen, July 15, 1853. 


nth the progressively liberal system of Turkey, and let him 
:eep his remonstrances till some case and occasion arises which 
alls for them. At present he has not been able even to allege 
ny oppression of the Christians, except that which he himself 
ractises in the Principalities. I believe the real fact at the 
ofctom of all these unintelligible pretences is that what he really 
rants is that the Sultan should not, by liberal measures and 
regressive improvement, interfere with the arbitrary and 
prannical powers which the Greek clergy now too often 
zeroise, whether by right or by assumption, to the cruel 
ppression of the Greek communities. But if the Emperor 
rants no more than what I have said, he ought to be satisfied 
nth the declarations which the Sultan is ready to make. If, 
D the other hand, the Emperor wants to become acknowledged 
■Dtector of the Greek subjects of the Sultan, and to be allowed 
3 interfere between the Sultan and the Sultan's subjects, why 
hen I say let him manfully avow this pretension, and let us 
aanfully assist Turkey in manfully resisting it, and let the 
arfcune of war decide between the Emperor's wrong and the 
Mian's rightful cause. In my opinion Russia ought to be 
equired to give a categorical answer, and to be driven from 
ha discreditable subterfuges behind which she has so long 
heltered her aggressive intentions. I believe that what I have 
ufc stated is what the Emperor really means and wants, and 
herefore I am coming reluctantly to the conclusion that war 
letween him and Turkey is becoming inevitable. If such war 
hall happen, upon his head be the responsibility of the conse- 

I by no means think with you that he will have an easy 
rictory over the Turks. On the contrary, if the betting is not 
nren, I would lay the odds on the Turks. All that the Turkish 
amy wants are directory officers, and it would be strange 
indeed if England, France, Poland, and Hungary could not 
«^ry supply that deficiency. I do not believe in the dis- 
rffection of the Turkish provinces ; this is an oft-repeated tale 
got up by the Russians. The best refutation is, that for many 
Booths past the Russian agents have been trying per /as et nefas 
to provoke insurrection in Turkey, and have failed. The fact 
m, that the Christian subjects in Turkey know too well what 
Bnssian regime is not to be aware that it is of all things the 
lost to be dreaded, and the oftener Russian troops enter Turkish 
territory the stronger this conviction is impressed upon the 
People. Russia ought not to forget that she has weak points — 
■Poland, Circassia, Georgia. My wish is that England should 


be on friendly terms with Russia; it is desirable th 
should be, for the sake of both countries and for the i 
Europe. Neither country would gain anything by wa 
the other ; and Russia, if her Government understood p 
her position, has important and useful functions to pen 
the system of Europe. The Emperor has, since 1848, i 
this last affair, performed those functions to the admin 
all thinking men. He seems latterly to have lost his rei 

Brunnow has often said to me that, however differ* 
internal organisation of England and Russia, and hi 
opposite their respective views as to the theory of goven 
they have, nevertheless, so many great interests in ca 
that there is nothing to prevent them from worlrin 
together so long as no difference arises between them mr% 
the affairs of Turkey or of Persia. Brunnow is a wise m 
matters seem to have been lately managed at Petersburg 1 
who are otherwise. 

All I can say is that, as far as I am concerned, I am d 
that England should be well with Russia as long as the El 
allows us to be so ; but if he is determined to break I 
with us, why, then, have at him, say I, and perhaps 1 
have enough of it before we have done with him. 

On October 4, he wrote to Lord Aberdeen, suj 
ing that it would be advantageous in all commc 
tions with Baron Brunnow, the Russian ambassad 
maintain a mysterious indefiniteness and uncertain 
to the degree and the manner of assistance which 
land would give to Turkey against Russia, and ] 
ing out that the Russian Government must gi 
dread an open rupture with England and France, 
knew that private and verbal communications, gif 
all honesty, but tinctured by the personal bias cd 
Prime Minister, were doing irreparable mischief 
that the Russian Minister was determined not to 
them at their true value, but persisted in giving 1 
the interpretation which he desired for them, nan 
an insuperable dislike on the part of the Enj 
Government to any active measures against his com 
Lord Aberdeen replied, with a view to reassure 1 
Falmerston : — 


it m very true that I may formerly have regarded the possi- 
f of war between England and Russia with the utmost 
tdulity ; but for some time past I have seen the desire for 
increase so much as to lead me to think that it is but too 
ihle. At present, therefore, votes jyrecltez le converti. As 
3runnow, he is already frightened out of his wits at the- 
ject, and most assuredly he hears nothing from me to 
dish his alarm. 

Oie crisis was now rapidly culminating. On Octo- 
5 the Porte issued a declaration making the further 
innation of peace depend upon the evacuation of 
Principalities within fifteen days ; and on October 
he English and French fleets passed up to Constan- 
ple, at the request of the Sultan. Lord Palmerston 
ted something even more decisive on our part. 

C. G. : October 7, 1853. 
fy dear Aberdeen, — The state of Russo-Turkish affairs 
s to require some statement on the part of England and 
joe, assuming, of course, that war has been declared by 
:ey, and that hostilities between Russia and Turkey are 
t to commence. I should, therefore, wish to propose to the 
net to-day- 
First, that instructions should be sent to Constantinople 
in the event of war having been declared, the two squad- 
chould enter the Black Sea, and should send word to the 
bn admiral at Sebastopol that, in the existing state of 
$8, any Russian ship-of-war found cruising in the Black Sea 
id be detained, and be given over to the Turkish Govern- 

Secondly, that England and France should propose to the 
in to conclude a convention to the effect that, whereas war 
unfortunately, broken out between Russia and Turkey, in 
aquence of differences created by unjust demands made upon 
coy by Russia, and by an unwarrantable invasion of the 
ash territory by a Russian army ; and whereas it is deemed 
England and France to be an object of general European* 
■est, and of special importance to them that the political 
pendence and the territorial integrity of the Ottoman empire 
Id be maintained inviolate against Russian aggression, the 
Powers engage to furnish to the Sultan such naval assist- 
may be necessary in existing circumstances for the 


defence of his empire ; and they moreover engage to perm 
of their respective subjects who may be willing to do so to 
the military or naval service of the Sultan. In retnn 
Sultan to engage that he will consult with England and 1 
as to the terms and conditions of the new treaty whicl 
determine, on the conclusion of hostilities, the future re) 
of Russia and Turkey/ 

Such a convention would unquestionably have a gre 
useful effect on the course to be pursued by the three I 

Lord Aberdeen, in reply, said : ' I cannot saj 
I think the present state of the Russo-Turkish qu< 
would authorise such a proceeding on our part a 
which you intend to propose.' Indeed, as the re 
of peace appeared more and more likely, mon 
more hesitation was developed in high quarters. I 
sentations were made that the fanatical party at 
stantinople had become so clamorous for war, for 
own purposes, that the Turk was thwarting instc 
assisting English efforts to come to a satisfactoi 
derstanding with Russia. It began to be feared 
England was about to be dragged behind the 
man chariot in a campaign the real object of ' 
was to obtain more power for two millions of M 
men to rule oppressively twelve millions of < 
tians. Suggestions were thrown out that if, 8 
aside all Turkish considerations, it was though 
England and Europe had such a strong in 
in keeping Turkish territory out of the has 
Russia as to be justified in going to war for tha 
pose, such a war ought to be carried on unshack 
any obligations to the Porte, and ought to lc 
such a peace as would provide other and better an 
ments for the future than the ' recomposition < 
ignorant, barbarian, and despotic rule of the M 
man over the most favoured and fertile porti 

Lord Aberdeen had forwarded to Lord Palm 
a Memorandum which he had received drawn up : 



•ense. 1 Lord Falmerston returned it with the follow- 
remarks : — 

Broadlands: November 1, 1853. 

I return the Memorandum, which states very clearly the 
tarae of past events, but which, towards its conclusion, points 
D future objects not consistent with the policy laid down in its 
Kgmning, and not easy to be carried into execution. 

According to my view of the matters in question, the case 
B simple and our course is clear. The five great Powers have, 
II a formal document, recorded their opinion that it is for the 
jnaral interest of Europe that the integrity and independence 
€ the Ottoman empire should be maintained ; and it would be 

Gto show that strong reasons, political and commercial, make 
pecially the interest of England that this integrity and inde- 
should be maintained. But Russia has attacked the 
dence and has violated the integrity of the Ottoman 
JBgnie ; and Russia must, by fair means or foul, be brought to 
Jtre up her pretensions and withdraw her aggression. England 
Ad France, urged by common interests to defend Turkey 
jtaanst Russia, have given Turkey physical assistance and 
R Ht ifl ftl and diplomatic support. They undertook to obtain for 
nrkey, by negotiation, a satisfactory and honourable settlement 
if her differences with Russia, and, failing that, to support 
)brkey in her defensive war. 

Hitherto our efforts at negotiation have failed, because the 
tp um gement which we proposed was declared, both by Turkey 
fad by Russia, to be such as Turkey could not honourably nor 
pMy adopt. The Turkish Government, seeing no apparent 
~ of better results from negotiation, and aware that 

of time was running to the disadvantage of Turkey, at 
after having for some considerable time yielded to our 
iHice to remain passive, came to a determination not unnatural, 
fed not unwise, and issued that declaration of war which we 
tri officially and publicly said that the Sultan would have been 
^Mtified in issuing the moment the Russians invaded his 

This declaration of war makes no change in the position of 
Thfllnnrl and France in relation to Turkey. We may still try 
Id persuade Russia to do what she ought to do, but we are still 

^d, by a regard for our own interests, to defend Turkey. 
9 is an excellent thing, and war is a great misfortune ; but 
there are many things more valuable than peace, and many 
tiringB much worse than war. 

1 From the Prince Consort. 


We passed the Rubicon when we first took part with 
and sent our squadrons to support her ; and when Engb 
France have once taken a third Power by the hand, thi 
Power must be carried in safety through the difficni 
which it may be involved. England and France cannor 
to be baffled, and whatever measures may be necessary c 
part to baffle their opponent, those measures must be u 
and the Governments of the two most powerful count 
the face of the earth must not be frightened, either by * 
things, either by the name or by the reality of war. 

No doubt when we put forth our whole strength in < 
of Turkey we shall be entitled to direct in a great mem 
course and character of the war, and to exercise a d 
influence on the negotiations which may afterwards ] 
peace. And it was with that view that, some time 
proposed to the Cabinet that, negotiation failing, Engk 
France should conclude a convention with Turkey, by 
on the one hand, the two Powers should engage to 
Turkey naval assistance, and to permit their respective 8 
to enter the Sultan's service, naval and military ; and by 
the Sultan, on the other hand, should engage to consu 
the two Powers as to the terms and conditions of peace 
the only grounds on which we can claim influence ii 
matters is our determination to give hearty and e 
support. We support Turkey for our own sake and i 
own interests, and to withdraw our support, or to crippl 
as to render it ineffectual, merely because the Turkish ( 
ment did not show as much deference to our advice 
advice deserved, would be to place our national interests 
mercy of other persons. If Lord Liverpool's Governnw 
so acted in regard to the Provisional Government of Sp 
never should have driven the French out of the Peninsu 

But, it is said, the Turks seem to wish for war, wl 
wish for peace. I apprehend that both parties wish i 
and the same thing, namely, the relinquishment by Kr 
inadmissible pretensions and her retirement from the 1 
territory; both parties would rather gain these ends 
pen than by the sword : we only differ in our belief as 
efficacy of these two methods. It is indeed possible tl 
Turks may think that a successful conflict would enabl 
to make a treaty of peace which should free them fr< 
thraldom of some of their old engagements ; and if th 
possible, it would certainly place future peace on a 


e concluding part of the Memorandum points to the 
ion of the Turks from Europe, and the establishment of 
ek empire in European Turkey. But such a scheme 
be diametrically opposed to the principles of the policy 
ich we have hitherto acted. To carry such a system into 
ion, we ought to join the Russians against the Turks, 
1 of helping the Turks against the Russians; for how 
such a reconstruction of Turkey become the result of a 
rful contest by England and France in defence of Turkey 1 

> no partiality for the Turks as Mahometans, and should 
y glad if they could be turned into Christians ; but as to 
laracter of the Turkish Government in regard to its 
lent of Christians, I am well convinced that there are a 
ramber of Christians under the Governments of Russia, 
ia, Rome, and Naples who would be rejoiced to be as well 
d, and to enjoy as much security for person and property 

Christian subjects of the Sultan. 1 

> expel from Europe the Sultan and his two millions of 
ilman subjects, including the army and the bulk of the 
raers, might not be an easy task ; still, the five Powers 

effect it, and play the Polish drama over again. But 
ivould find the building up still more difficult than the 
g down. There are no sufficient Christian elements as 
*r a Christian state in European Turkey capable of per- 
og its functions as a component part of the European 
a. The Greeks are a small minority, and could not be 
overning race. The Sclavonians, who are the majority, 
t possess the conditions necessary for becoming the bones 
[news of a new state. A reconstruction of Turkey means 
ar more nor less than its subjection to Russia, direct or 
wt, immediate or for a time delayed. 
• seems to me, then, that our course is plain, simple, and 
Jit : that we must help Turkey out of her difficulties by 
iation, if possible ; and that if negotiation fails, we must, 
rce of arms, carry her safely through her dangers. 

tord Palmerston was not confining his suggestions 
oposals for mere acts of force. He enters, in the 
letter, on a discussion as to the best way of pre- 
og a form of arrangement to the two contending 
es so as to secure its favourable consideration. He 

"he Italians, when this was written, had not achieved the liberty 
K>d government which they now enjoy. 


agreed with Lord John Kussell in thinking it unadviB- 
able to present the note to the Turks without leaving 
them any discretion as to alterations which they might 

Broadlanda: October 24, 1863. 

My dear John Russell, — If we wish to prevail on the Porte, 
to sign a note for presentation to the Emperor, we must leave 
the Turkish Government the power of proposing alterations in 
the draft we send them. We may hope that our draft may be 
accepted by them without alteration ; but they may have good 
reasons which have not occurred to us for desiring some 
changes, or they may have even bad reasons which, if the 
changes they propose would not increase our difficulties at 
Petersburg, might, in spite of their badness, be allowed to pre- 
vail. If we send them a draft which they must either take as 
it is or reject, we may have a rejection, and we may lose by 
our pertinacity an invaluable chance of a peaceful arrangement J 

But further, if we are prepared to impose our form of J; 
words on Turkey, we should thereby incur an honourable _. 
engagement to impose them equally on Russia ; and are we, or .- 
are the French, or is Austria, or is Prussia prepared to declare 
war against Russia, not for the defence of the Turkish empire 
and the preservation of the balance of power in Europe, but 
in order to compel the Emperor of Russia to accept a particular 
form of words put together in Downing Street. This would 
surely be carrying the parental affection of authorship beyond g 
reasonable extent. Then as to the way in which the draft of ^ 
note should be sent to Constantinople. I agree with you that. f 
it would be inexpedient to revive the Vienna conference for 
such a purpose, or, indeed, for any other. That conference k 
dead — peace to its remains. No good can come out of a confer- 
ence at Vienna on these matters, and at the present time. A 
Vienna conference means Buol, and Buol means MeyendorJi 
and Meyendorf means Nicholas; and the Turks know this, and 
so does all Europe. 

Moreover, the very atmosphere of Vienna is unhealthy. 1 
I doubt whether even you or I should not find ourselves para- 
lysed by the political miasma of the place. If the machinery 
of a conference is to be set up again, and it may be very useful . 

1 * Vienna is a sad place for humbug, and X. suffered from the 
atmosphere as does the liveliest and sturdiest dog in the Grotto del 
Cane.' — Lord Palmer ston to Lord Clarendon. 


organise it, we ought to make a sine qud non of its being 
in London. 

. is, indeed, doubtful whether the gold and silver age of 
has not gone by, and whether, when the Fwry gets to 
antdnople, she will not find the age of brass and iron 
fy begun ; but we are quite right to make the attempt. 

adeed it was so. The two armies were already in 
ict ; and, on November 30, the navies also met in 
ly fight, when the Turkish fleet was destroyed at 
pe. The feeling now roused in England was very 
,g ; and Lord Palmerston, on December 10, wrote 
wrd Aberdeen : — 

111 you allow me to take this opportunity of repeating in 
>g what I have more than once said verbally, on the state 
ngs between Russia and Turkey ? It appears to me that 
&ve two objects in view : the one to put an end to the 
at war between these two Powers ; the other to prevent, 
• as diplomatic arrangements can do so, a recurrence of 
ur differences, and, through those differences, renewed 
its to the peace of Europe. 

ow, it seems to me that, unless Turkey shall be laid pros- 
at the feet of Russia by disasters and war, an event which 
did and France could not without dishonour permit, no 

can be concluded between the contending parties unless 
imperor consents to evacuate the Principalities, to abandon 
unands, and to renounce some of the embarrassing stipula- 
of former treaties upon which he has founded the preten- 
which have been the cause of existing difficulties. 
d bring the Emperor to agree to this, it is necessary to 

a considerable pressure upon him; and the quarter in 
i that pressure can at present be most easily brought to 
is the Black Sea and the countries bordering upon it. In 
)lack Sea, the combined English, French, and Turkish 
rons are indisputably superior to the Russian fleet, and are 
to give the law to that fleet. What I would strongly 
imend, therefore, is that which I proposed some months 
o the Cabinet, namely, that the Russian Government and 
tussian admiral at Sebastopol should be informed that so 
as Russian troops occupy the Principalities, or hold a 
on in any other part of the Turkish territory, no Russian 
of- war can be allowed to show themselves out of port in 
'lack Sea. 
L. n. U 


You will say that this would be an act of hostility towards 
Russia ; but so is the declaration already made, that no Russian 
ships shall be permitted to make any landing or attack on any 
part of the Turkish territory. The only difference between the 
two declarations is, that the one already made is incomplete 
and insufficient for its purpose, and that the one which I pro- 
pose would be complete and sufficient. If the Russian fleet 
were shut up in Sebastopol, it is probable that the Turks would 
be able to make in Asia an impression that would tend to 
facilitate the conclusion of peace. 

With regard to the conditions of peace, it seems to me that 

the only arrangement which could afford to Europe a fair 

security against future dangers arising out of the encroachments 

of Russia on Turkey, and the attempts of the Russian Gorem- 

ment to interfere in the internal affairs of the Turkish empire, 

would be that arrangement which I have often suggested, 

namely, that the treaty to be concluded between Russia and 

Turkey should be an ordinary treaty of peace and friendship, of 

boundaries, commerce, and mutual protection of the subjects of 

one party within the territories of the other ; and that all the 

stipulations which might be required for the privileges of the 

Principalities and of Servia, and for the protection of the 

Christian religion and its churches in the Ottoman dominions 

by the Sultan should be contained in a treaty between the 

Sultan and the five Powers. By such a treaty Russia would 

be prevented from dealing single-handed with Turkey in regard 

to those matters on which she has, from time to time, endeavoured 

to fasten a quarrel on the Sultan. 

Lord Aberdeen replied on the 13th : € I confess lam 
not prepared to adopt the mode which yon think most 
likely to restore peace.' He went on to say that he 
should prefer an open declaration of war to the ' pie* 
snre ' which Lord Palmerston proposed ; but as 'the 
nnion of the four Powers had just been effected, with a 
declaration that the integrity of the Turkish Empire 
was an object of general interest, it was to be presumed 
that they would take measures to secure it. Recourse, 
therefore, to direct hostility would be out of place, j 
although it might eventually come. 1 

Lord Palmerston resigned on the 15th. We have ' 


seen in the last chapter what was the immediate reason 
which he assigned; but .the fact is that, as Mr. King- 
lake says, he was gifted with the instinct which enables 
& man to read the heart of a nation, and he felt that 
the English people would never forgive the Ministry if 
nothing decisive was done after the disaster at Sinope. 
During his short absence of about ten days, the Cabinet 
resolved to send the fleet into the Black Sea, with in- 
structions to the admiral to prevent any Russian vessels 
of war from leaving port. Lord Aberdeen, in acknow- 
ledging the withdrawal of Lord Palmerston's resignation, 

I am glad to find that you approve of a recent decision of 
the Cabinet with respect to the British and French fleets adopted 
in jour absence. I feel sure you will have learnt with pleasure 
that, whether you are absent or present, the Government are 
duly careful to preserve from all injury the interests and dignity 
tf the country. 

The session of 1854 began on January 31. On Feb- 
ruary 7, the Eussian ambassador was recalled, and 
Shortly after the British Government sent a final ulti- 
matum to the Eussian Emperor, calling upon him to 
evacuate the Principalities by April 30. Meanwhile 
troops were despatched to the East, and active prepara- 
tions were carried on at home. On March 7 Lord 
Palmerston presided over a banquet given at the Eeform 
Club to Sir Charles Napier, previous to his departure 
with the fleet for the Baltic. I give an extract from 
Lord Palmerston's speech on this occasion, both as 
illustrating the temper of the time, and as a specimen 
of the spirited ease and humour with which he could 
itir up an after-dinner audience. His enjoyment was 
contagious, and the company laughed sympathetically 
even before they heard the joke. 

After the formal toasts had been duly drunk^Lord 
Palmerston rose and said : — 

There was a very remarkable entertainer of dinner company, 
ailed Sir It. Preston, who lived in the City, and who, when he 



gave dinners at Greenwich, after gorging his guests with turtle, 
used to turn round to the waiters and say, ' Now bring dinner/ 
Gentlemen, we have had the toasts which correspond with the 
turtle, and now let's go to dinner. Now let us drink the toast 
which belongs to the real occasion of our assembling here. I 
give you * The health of my gallant friend Sir Charles Napier/ 
who sits beside me. If, gentlemen, I were addressing a Hamp- 
shire audience, consisting of country gentlemen residing in that 
county, to which my gallant friend and myself belong, I should 
introduce him to your notice as an eminent agriculturist. It 
has been my good fortune, when enjoying his hospitality at 
Merchistoun Hall, to receive most valuable instructions from 
him while walking over his farm about stall-feeding, growing 
turnips, wire fencing, under-draining, and the like. My gallant 
friend is a match for everything, and whatever he turns his hand 
to he generally succeeds in it. However, gentlemen, he now, like 
Cincinnatus, leaves his plough, puts on his armour, and is pre- 
pared to do that good service to his country which he will 
always perform whenever an opportunity is afforded to him. I 
pass over those earlier exploits of his younger days, which are 
well known to the members of his profession ; but, perhaps, one 
of the most remarkable exploits of his life is that which he 
performed in the same cause of liberty and justice in which he 
is now about to be engaged. In the year 1833, when gallantly 
volunteering to serve the cause of the Queen of Portugal 
against the encroachments and the usurpations of Don Miguel 
— to defend constitutional rights and liberties against arbitrary 
power — he took the command of a modest fleet of frigates and 
corvettes, and, at the head of that little squadron, he captured 
a squadron far superior in force, including two line-of-battle 
ships, one of which my gallant friend was the first to board. 
But on that occasion my gallant friend exhibited a characteristic 
trait. When he had scrambled upon the deck of this great 
line-of-battle ship, and was clearing the deck of those who had 
possession of it, a Portuguese officer ran at him full dart with 
his drawn sword to run him through. My gallant friend quietly 
parried the thrust, and, not giving himself the trouble to deal 
in any other way with his Portuguese assailant, merely gave 
him a hearty kick, and sent him down the hatchway. "Wei 
gentlemen, that victory was a great event — I don't mean the 
victory over the officer who went down, but the victory over 
the fleet, which my gallant friend took into port ; for that vic- 
tory decided a great cause then pending. It decided the liber- 


lies of Portugal ; it decided the question between constitutional 
•nd arbitrary power — a contest which began in Portugal, and 
which went on afterwards in Spain, when my gallant friend Sir 
De Lacy Evans lent his powerful aid in the same cause, and with 
the same success. My gallant friend Sir Charles Napier, how- 
erer, got the first turn of fortune, and it was mainly owing to 
that victory of his that the Queen of Portugal afterwards occu- 
pied the throne to which she was rightfully entitled, and the 
Portuguese nation obtained that Constitution which they have 
«rer since enjoyed. A noble friend of mine, now no more, 
▼hose loss I greatly lament, for he was equally distinguished as 
* man, as a soldier, and as a diplomatist, the late Lord William 
Russell — an honour to his country, as to his family — told me 
that one day he heard that my gallant friend Sir Charles Napier 
was in the neighbourhood of the fortress of Yalenza, a Portu- 
guese fortress some considerable distance from the squadron 
which he commanded. Lord W. Russell and Colonel Hare 
vent to see my gallant friend, and Lord W. Bussell told me 
that they met a man dressed in a very easy way, followed by a 
Allow with two muskets on his shoulders. They took him at 
&gt for Robinson Crusoe ; but who should these men prove to 
be but the gallant admiral on my right and a marine behind 
him. ' "Well, Napier,' said Lord W. Russell, ' what are you 
doinghere % ' ' Why/ said my gallant friend, ' I am waiting to 
lake v alenza.' ' But,' said Lord William, ' Yalenza is a forti- 
fied town, and you must know that we soldiers understand how 
fortified towns are taken. You must open trenches ; you must 
make approaches; you must establish a battery in breach ; and 
all liiis takes a good deal of time, and must be done according 
to rule. 9 ' Oh,' said my gallant friend, ' I have no time for all 
that. I have got some of my blue-jackets up here and a few of 
f; *iy ship's guns, and I mean to take the town with a letter.' 
And so he did. He sent the governor a letter to tell him he 
had much better surrender at discretion. The governor was a 
very sensible man ; and so surrender he did. So the trenches, 
and the approaches, the battery, breach, and all that, were saved, 
and the town of Yalenza was handed over to the Queen of 
Portugal. Well, the next great occasion in which my gallant 
friend took a prominent and distinguished part — a part for 
which I can assure you that I personally, in my official capacity, 
and the Government to which I had the honour to belong, felt 
deeply indebted and obliged to him — was the occasion of the 
war in Syria. There my gallant friend distinguished himself, 


as usual, at sea and on shore. All was one to him, where* 
erer an enemy was to be found : and I feel sure that when the 
enemy was found, the enemy wished to Heaven he had not 
been found. Well, my gallant friend landed with his marines, 
headed a Turkish detachment, defeated the Egyptian troops, 
gained a very important victory, stormed the town of Sidon, 
captured three or four thousand Egyptian prisoners, and after* 
wards took a prominent part in the attack and capture of the 
important fortress of Acre. I am bound to say that the Go- 
vernment to which I belonged, in sending those instruction* 
which led to the attack upon Acre, were very much guided ty 
the opinions which we had received of the practicability of tint 
achievement in letters from my gallant friend. 

Mr. Bright, a few days later in the House of Com- 
mons, took Lord Palmerston to task for the tone of 
this speech. Such apparent levity and gatie de cceur in 
a Minister of the Crown must have grated on the sen- 
timent of one who abhorred the war, and thought it 
unnecessary. But surely when the conflict was inevit- 
able and imminent, it was the common-sense view of 
patriotism to neglect no means, however trifling, of 
keeping up the heart and spirit of the nation. Lord 
Palmerston, however, was so stung by the manner of 
the attack, that he replied with a bitterness and severity 
quite unusual for him, and which, perhaps, was exces- 
sive — the House for the moment showing by the excla- 
mations of some of its members that this was the 
impression made upon it. At the same time it mint 
be allowed that it was very galling to a man of Lord 
Palmerston's character to be held up to public repro- 
bation as one who was inciting people to fight as if they 
were cocks in a pit. 

The war had now fairly begun, and as early as June 
Lord Palmerston proposed to the Cabinet a descent on 
the Crimea. He urged that the siege of Sebastopol 
was the object on which the allied armies should be 
directed. The occupation of the Principalities by the 
Russian forces he regarded as a pledge for the neutrality 
of Austria, her active alliance with the enemy being 



possible should all fear be removed of Russia's 

lanent hold upon the Danube. He was, therefore, 

>ng advocate for leaving the Russians in undis- 

>d enjoyment of the pestilent air of the Dobrudscha, 

for crossing over from Varna to the great Russian 

on the Black Sea. 

The Cabinet unanimously acknowledged the force of 

arguments, though there were some few who wished 

a postponement of such an expedition until the 

id year of the campaign. The difficulty was the 

>repared state of the French army, which was still 

icient both in men and material. The French officers, 

1, generally disliked this selection of the Crimea as 


The following Memorandum on the measures to be 

>pted against Russia was sent round to the Cabinet : — 

C. G. : June 15, 1864. 
Some conversation having passed on Wednesday evening 
Sir Charles Wood's between some members of the Cabinet, 
it the objects to which our operations ought to be directed in 
war against Russia, I wish to submit the following observa- 
is to the Cabinet. 
*> England and France have entered into war with a great 
Bower, have made great exertions, at a great expense, and for a 

Et purpose. They would lose caste in the world if they con- 
ed the war with only a small result. The particular overt 
•etby which Russia broke the peace was the invasion of the 
ftmube Principalities, but the purpose for which we took up 
.mas would be very imperfectly accomplished if the only result of 
Ae war was to be the evacuation of those provinces by the 
Busman army, even if that evacuation were accompanied by a 
▼•iver on the part of Russia of the demands she has made upon 
Turkey. Such a result would be a triumph rather than a defeat 
4* Russia. 

She would say that she had defied and withstood the naval 
•&d military strength of two of the greatest Powers of the 
*orld, that these Powers had been unable to hurt her, and that 
&e had substantially gained all that she had set out by demand- 
uig, inasmuch as the Sultan had done by his own act for his 
Christian subjects that which she had required. We should 
"ton have no security for the future, and whenever a more 


favourable opportunity might present itself, whenever England 
and France were disunited, she would again make her spring 
upon Turkey, and with a better chance of success. 

It seems absolutely necessary that some heavy blow should 
be struck at the naval power and territorial dimensions of Russia, 
and unless this be done in the present year, the accomplishment 
of it will become more difficult, and the reputation of England 
and France will materially suffer. 

The points where such blows could best be struck are 
evidently the Russian possessions in Georgia and Circassia and 
the Crimea. 

The expulsion of the Russians from Georgia and Circassia 
must probably be left to the Turks and the Circassians, and no 
effort should be left untried to reorganise the Turkish army in 
Asia, by placing it under European officers, so as to put it into 
a condition to drive the Russians out of Georgia before the 
season for military operations is over, and to co-operate with the 

The British and French troops are now, to a certain degree, 
pledged to co-operate with Omar Pasha in raising the siege of 

If that can be accomplished early enough to leave time for 
operations afterwards in the Crimea, well and good ; and of 
course the British and French troops would be ordered in no 
case to cross the Danube and entangle themselves in the un- 
healthy plains of Wallachia. 

But I confess that it seems to me, that if the combined army 
had been ready to undertake the reduction of the Crimea ana 
Sebastopol, that object is so infinitely more important than the 
temporary defence of the Danube fortresses, that I would have 
preferred that Silistria and the line of the Danube should have 
been abandoned, and that Omar Pasha should have fallen back 
upon Schumla, and Varna, and Adrianople, and that the allied 
army should have gone at once to the Crimea. 

The Russians could not retain permanently the Danube 
fortresses, and if they moved on to the southward they musk 
have left garrisons in them. The further they advanced south- 
ward the greater would be their difficulties of all kinds, and the 
more the effective strength of their army would dwindle away, 
and the more easily, therefore, they would afterwards be de- 
feated. But the further south the point at which they might be 
defeated, the more fatal a defeat would be. 

The occupation of the Danube fortresses by Russia would 


ij a temporary and precarious advantage for her. The 

of Sebastopol and of the Russian Black Sea fleet would 

lasting and important advantage to us. Such a success 

act with great weight upon the fortunes of the war, and 

tell essentially upon the negotiations for peace. We 

be able materially and at once to reduce our naval ex- 

Lture if the Russian Black Sea fleet were destroyed or in 

don; and, holding the Crimea and Sebastopol, we 

dictate the conditions of peace in regard to the naval 

>n of Russia in the Black Sea. 

[There does not seem good reason to believe that the Rus- 

have at present more than 40,000 men in the Crimea, if 

have bo many ; and if 25,000 English and 35,000 French 

be landed somewhere in the large bay to the north of 

>pol, there can be little doubt that they would be able to 

the fort on the hill on the north side of the harbour of 

)1, and they would then command the harbour, fleet, 


enterprise need not prevent the capture of Anapa and 
this year, but even if it did there can surely be no com- 
between the value of the capture of Sebastopol and the 
of the forts on the coast of Circassia. The capture of 
~ and the capture or destruction of the Russian fleet 
of course imply the surrender of the Russian troops 
form the garrison of the place, or their evacuation of the 
by capitulation, and either of these results would be a 
feat of arms for the allied forces. Anapa and Poti 
be taken at leisure afterwards, and with greater ease if 
)1 had been mastered. 
Bat if the attack on the Crimea is put off till next year the 
kaftan Government will have time to strengthen the defences 
I the place, and to increase the garrison to any amount which 
b peninsula can hold, and we may find the undertaking far 
fee difficult then than it would have been this year. 

He Emperor will, during the autumn, winter, and spring, 

fe and train recruite enough to make good his losses during 

til campaign, and next year we should have to deal with a 

iblfbroed and reorganised army, instead of with one worn 

Urn and dispirited by the unsuccessful operations of this 

Huner. On the other hand, the allied troops are now fresh, 

Jler, and ready for enterprise. If they are to remain inactive 

iff next spring, their health may give way, their spirits may 

tg, their mutual cordiality and good understanding may be 


cooled down by intrigues, jealousies, and disputes, and pubHft i 
opinion, which in England and France now stands by the two ] 
Governments, and bears up the people of the two countries to 
make the sacrifices necessary for the war, may take another \ 
turn, and people may grow tired of burthens which have pro* J 
duced no sufficient and satisfactory result. 

It seems to me, then, that the French Government ongtt 
to be urged to press forward the complete formation of their 
co-operating army in Turkey, and that we ought to endeavour 
to make arrangements with them for an attack on Sebastopd 
as soon as the combined army is in a state to undertake it. 

We do not seem likely to accomplish anything of muck 
importance in the Baltic, and on that account it is the more 
desirable that we should gain some real and signal advantage i& 
the Black Sea. 


And to the Minister of Wax he writes on the same) 

Brocket : June 16, 1854. 

You said yesterday at the Cabinet that yon wished to 
over what was to be written to Raglan by the mail which 
go before our next Cabinet, and as I was obliged to leave 
Cabinet early to save my railway train to this place, I send 
my vote in writing. 

It seems to me that to keep the allied army in Bulgaria/4 
and to carry on operations on the banks of the Danube, woott. 
be to throw away time, money, men, official and national re- 

Nothing that we could do there would have any 
effect on the war, nor could it help us one step towards 
attainment of that future security which our convention 
France specifies as one of the main conditions of peace, 
if we were to drive the Russians across the Pruth, it would 
what the French call a coup <Vep&e dams Vecm — a tern; 
advantage which would cease the moment we withdrew, 
should, indeed, doubt the wisdom of an advance of the 
to the north of the Danube, nor ought they to attach too 
importance to the line of the Danube. Omar Pasha was q 
right to defend the Danube and Silistria as long as he 
but I should not have thought less well of ultimate results 
he had retired at length to Schumla and Varna, or even 


ople. The Russian difficulties would increase with every 

oarch to the southward, and the dangers of their position 

become more and more serious. 

only chance of bringing Russia to terms is by offensive 

by defensive operations. We and the French ought to 

e Crimea and take Sebastopol and the Russian fleet the 

our two armies are in a condition to go thither. Sixty 

English and French troops, with the fleets co-operating, 

accomplish the object in six weeks after landing, and if 
w were accompanied by successful operations in Georgia 
, we might have a merry Christmas and a happy 

is not the slightest danger of the Russians getting to 
itinople. The Turks are able to prevent that ; but even 
could not, the Austrians would be compelled, by the 
circumstances, to do so. Austria has, as usual, been 
a shabby game. When she thought the Russians likely 
on, and while she fancied England and Fiance needed 
j, she bragged of her determination to be active against 
As soon as she found our troops at Varna, she changed 
>, and, according to a despatch which Clarendon had in 
yesterday, she now says she shall not enter the Prin- 
and the Russians must be driven out by the Turks 
> English and French. She can hardly think us simple 
to do her work for her ; but the best way to force her 
would be to send our troops off to the Crimea. This ia 

the 29th of June the Duke of Newcastle sent 
[instructions to Lord Raglan to make an immediate 
ice on Sebastopol. Few persons at that time fore- 
he delay and difficulties which would have to be 
itered before success crowned the enterprise. The 
of State for War himself, writing to Lord 
iton in the beginning of September, said that he 
i sanguine enough to give the allied forces only three 
fcrar days after descending upon the Russian coast 
bre they would be in possession of Sebastopol. On 
tl4th of September the troops of France and England 
fled in the Crimea, and a few days later they won the 
tie of the Alma. On the 3rd of October the news 
the fall of Sebastopol arrived. It was believed by 


most people for nearly twenty-four hours. Indeed, tin 
Emperor of the French himself announced it to fail 
troops at the camp of Helfant. 

These reported successes drew from no less 
authority than Mr. Gladstone a recognition of Loif 
Palmerston's initiative in designating the Crimea 
the proper field for the allied armies. In a letter 
the 4th October, he says : — 

My purpose is to offer you a congratulation which I feel 
be especially due to you upon the great events which are 
place in the Crimea. Much as we must all rejoice on 
grounds at these signal successes, and thankful as the 
nation may justly feel to a Higher Power, yet in looking 
upon the instruments through which such results have 
about, I for one cannot help repeating to you the thanks 
offered at an earlier period for the manner in which you 
when we were amidst many temptations to far more eml 
ing and less effective proceedings — the duty of concent 
our strokes upon the true heart and centre of the war 

In the month of November, 1854, Lord Palm* 
went over to Paris with Lady Palmerston. mainly 
the view of having an interview with the Em] 
He writes to his brother : — 

Yesterday Emily and I dined at St. Cloud. The dinner 
very handsome, and our hosts very agreeable. The Em] 
was full of life, animation, and talk, and the more one ~ 
her the prettier one thinks her. I have found the Emperor 
Drouyn de Lhuys in very good opinions on the subject of 
war, and acting towards us with perfect fairness, openness, 
good faith. 

Meanwhile in the Crimea all was not proei 
and the disappointment of the public when they 1< 
that Sebastopol had not been taken, as reported, i 
creased their impatience. A sort of Nemesis hung ( 
Lord John Eussell, and compelled him to become 
spokesman of the general feeling, and to indicate * 
Palmerston, his rejected lieutenant, as the man of 


In a letter to the Prime Minister Lord John 

the necessity of a change in the War Department, 

ited out the ' necessity of having in that office a 

"who, from experience of military details, from in- 

vigour of mind, and from weight with the House 

imons, can be expected to guide the great opera- 

of war with authority and success. There is only 

person,' he continued, ' belonging to the Govern- 

who combines these advantages. My conclusion 

it before Parliament meets Lord Palmerston should 

itrusted with the seals of the War Department/ 

Aberdeen, however, declined to recommend the 

to the Queen, alleging, with great fairness, that 

fh on the first constitution of the office such an 

_ nnent might have been best, yet that the Duke 

rewcastle had discharged his duties too ably and 

tbly to afford any justification for his removal. 

a short winter session, in which the Foreign 

Lent Bill was passed, Parliament reassembled on 

23rd of January, 1855. Mr. Soebuck, on the first 

gave notice that he intended to move for the ap- 

tent of a select committee ' to inquire into the 

>n of our army before Sebastopol, and into the 

of those departments of the Government whose 

it has been to minister to the wants of that army. 9 

John Russell immediately resigned. Writing to 

Aberdeen, he said : ' I do not see how the motion 

be resisted : but as it involves a censure upon the 

Department, with which some of my colleagues are 

Eected, my only course is to tender my resignation.' 
. Palmerston's opinion on this event is contained in 
i following letter : — 

Piccadilly : January 24, 1855. 
dear John Russell, — I received your letter of this morn- 

ah much regret, and I feel bound in candour to say that 
your decision ill-timed. Everybody foresaw that on the 
Mug of Parliament after Christmas some such motion as that 
Vfen notice of by Roebuck was likely to be made ; and if you 
4 determined not to face such a motion, your announcement 


of such a decision a fortnight ago would have rendered it mow 
easy for your colleagues to have taken whatever course such i 
announcement might have led to, either to have met your view; 
by a new arrangement of offices, or to have given up the Govern- 
ment in a manner creditable to all parties concerned. As it '*, 
you will have the appearance of having remained in office, ail- 
ing in carrying on a system of which you disapproved until 
driven out by Roebuck's announced notice, and the Govn- ; 
ment will have the appearance of self-condemnation by flyiat 
from a discussion which they dare not face ; while as reganS 
the country, the action of the executive will be paralysed for ft 
time in a critical moment of a great war, with an impending 
negotiation, and we shall exhibit to the world a melancholy] 
spectacle of disorganisation among our political men at hamfi 
similar to that which has prevailed among our military mat ' 
abroad. My opinion is that, if you had simply renewed tin 
proposal which you made before Christmas, such an arrange- 
ment might have been made; and there are constitutional and 
practical grounds on which such a motion as Roebuck's might 
have been resisted without violence to any opinions which you 
may entertain as to the past period. 

The ministerial explanations which took place in thd 
House of Commons were immediately followed by the j 
Roebuck motion for a select committee. Left in the j 
lurch by their recognised leader, the Aberdeen Cabinet! 
found their best defender in the man for whom many rfJ 
them had felt distrus ., Lord Palmerston, coming gal- j 
lantly forward to take upon himself the invidious dutf 
of supporting an Administration over which he had little 
control, and which, before disaster came, had neglected 
his advice, said that he fully concurred that the respon- 
sibility for the conduct of the war fell not on the Duke 
of Newcastle alone, but on the whole Cabinet. He did 
not deny that there had been something calamitous in 
the condition of our army, but he traced it to the in- 
experience arising from a long peace. If the House 
thought the Government not deserving of confidence, 
the direct and manly course would have been to affirm 
that proposition. The course about to be pursued would 
be dangerous and inconvenient in its results abroad. 


Be hoped that when the House had determined what 
*et of men should be entrusted with public affairs, they 
would give their support to that Government, and not 
thow to Europe that a nation could only meet a great 
crisis when it was deprived of representative institu- 
tions. "When the House divided there appeared for 
Mir* Roebuck's motion, 305; against it, 148. Majority 
•gainst the Government, 157, This startling result 
po amazed the House that they forgot to cheer, but 
laughed derisively. 

On the 1st of February Lord Palmerston formally 
panounced in the Commons the resignation of the 
IIEnistry. Thus fell the Coalition Cabinet of 1852, 
fte victim of the war which it had itself declared. 




Lord Derby was sent for to form a Government, and 
immediately sought the co-operation of Lord Palmer- j 
ston, offering bim the leadership of the House of 
Commons, which Mr. Disraeli was willing to wai?e in 
his favour. Offers were also made, through him, to 
Mr. Gladstone and Mr. Sidney Herbert. Lord Palmer- 
ston, however, in the following letter, declined the pro- 
posals, having also expressed his great unwillingness, 
under existing circumstances, to belong to any Go?ern- 
ment in which the management of foreign affairs did 
not remain in Lord Clarendon's hands : — 

144 Piccadilly : January 31, 1866. 

My dear Derby, — Having well reflected upon the proposition 
which you made to me this morning, I have come to the oar* 
elusion that if I were to join your Government, as proposed \ff 
you, I should not give to that Government that strength which 
you are good enough to think would accrue to you from nrj 
acceptance of office. 

I shall, however, deem it my duty, in the present critifld 1 
state of affairs, to give, out of office, my support to any Govern* 
ment that shall carry on the war with energy and vigour, and 
will, in the management of our foreign relations, sustain the 
dignity and interests of the country, and maintain unimpaired 
the alliances which have been formed. < 

I have conveyed to Gladstone and Sidney Herbert the 
communication which you wished me to make to them; but it 
seemed to me to be best that they should write to jut 


d Derby at once retired, and Lord John Russell 
5 next person sent for by the Queen, who signified 
would give her particular satisfaction if Lord 
ston could join in the formation. He expressed 
ingness to do so ; but many of the Whigs posi- 
declined, and notably Lord Clarendon. Lord 
«ussell therefore resigned the commission which 
sen had entrusted to him ; and in his letter an- 
lg this to Lord Palmerston he thanked him for 
cfiness with which he had consented to aid the 
on of a Government, and promised his support 
avent of Lord Palmerston being charged by the 
with this difficult but honourable task, 
d Palmerston replied : — 

February 4, 1866. 1 
lk you for your letter, which I have just received, 
the course which you have adopted was, under all tir- 
oes, the best. The events which led to the present 
things were too recent to have allowed personal feelings 
de sufficiently to have enabled you to succeed in the 
ich the Queen had asked you to undertake; and to 
ide an imperfect arrangement would not have been 
veous either to yourself or to the country. 
>1 very thankful to you for what you say with reference 
>ssibility that the Queen might desire me to try to form 
oment ; and if this should be, I should, of course, lose 
in communicating with you. 

i ' possibility ' was what everyone, during these 
' negotiations, foresaw to be a necessity. Lord 
ston was requested to take up the abandoned 
id he successfully performed it. He thus writes 
mother to announce the event : — 

Downing Street : February 16, 1865. 

' Quod nemo promittere Divum 

Auderet volvenda dies en attulit ultro.* 

onth ago if any man had asked me to say what was one 
nost improbable events, I should have said my being' 
Minister. Aberdeen was there, Derby was head of one 
arty, John Russell of the other, and yet, in about ten 
H. X 



days' time, they all gave way like straws before the wind, and 
so here am I, writing to you from Downing Street, as First 
Lord of the Treasury. 

The fact was that Aberdeen and Newcastle had become 
discredited in public estimation as statesmen equal to the 
emergency. Derby felt conscious of the incapacity of the 
greater portion of his party, and their unfitness to govern the 
country, and John Russell, by the way in which he suddenly 
abandoned the Government, had so lost caste for the moment 
that I was the only one of his political friends who was willing 
to serve under him. I could not refuse to do so, because he 
told me that upon my answer depended his undertaking to* 
form a Government, and if I had refused, and he had declined 
the task, and the Queen had then sent for me, people would 
have ascribed my refusal to personal ambition. Besides, he 
broke with the late Government because the War Department 3 
was not given to me, and it would have been ungrateful of me 
to have refused to assist him. It is, however, curious that the 
same man who summarily dismissed me three years ago, as 
unfit to be Minister for Foreign Afiairs, should now have 
broken up a Government because I was not placed in what 
he conceived to be the most important post in the present state 
of things. 

I think our Government will do very well. I am backed 
by the general opinion of the whole country, and I have no- 
reason to complain of the least want of cordiality or confidence 
on the part of the Court. 

As Aberdeen has become an impossibility, I am, for the 
moment Vinevitable. We are sending John Russell to negotiate 
at Vienna. This will serve as a proof to show that we are in 
earnest in our wish for peace, and in our determination to have 
sufficiently satisfactory terms. I have no great faith in the 
sincerity of Russia, though it is said that the Emperor Nicholas 
is much pressed by many around him to make peace as soon as 
he can. But we must insist upon his having a very small 
number of ships-of-war in the Black Sea, probably not more 
than four, and it will be a great gulp for him to swallow such 
a condition, especially seeing that we have not been able as 
yet to take his fleet. We must also ask for the destruction of 
the works at Sebastopol, although we should not make that a 
sine qud non, unless we had taken the place and had destroyed 
the works ourselves. However, a short time will show whether 
we are to have peace or war, and, in the meanwhile, we are 


making our preparations for war as if peace was out of the 

I expect to be tolerably strong in Parliament for some little 
ame to come, and I think that when the session is over it will 
>e advisable to dissolve. 

We shall have many discontented men behind us, because the 
wdy of the Whigs are angry that the Peelites joined me, and 
tave occupied places which the Whigs hoped to have them- 
elves ; but if the Peelites had not joined me, we should have 
ad an equally numerous band of discontented, only with this 
ifference, that they would have consisted of more able men. 
Aberdeen and Newcastle behaved in the most friendly and 
Kmourable manner possible in persuading their friends to 
emain in the Government, but I see that the Peelite section 
tall continues to endeavour to make itself a little separate 

When one of the leading Peelites hesitated to accept 
he offer made to him, Lord Palmerston, divining his 
houghts, wrote openly to him as follows : — 

To speak plainly and frankly, you distrust my views and 
ntentions, and you think that I should be disposed to continue 
he war without necessity, for the attainment of objects either 
mreasonable in themselves or unattainable by the means at 
iir command, or not worth the efforts necessary for their 
tisainment. In this you misjudge me. If by a stroke of the 
rand I could effect in the map of the world the changes which 
. could wish, I am quite sure that I could make arrangements 
ar more conducive than some of the present ones to the peace 
& nations, to the progress of civilisation, to the happiness and 
relfare of mankind; but I am not so destitute of common 
ense as not to be able to compare ends with means, and to see 
hat the former must be given up when the latter are wanting; 
tad when the means to be brought to bear for the attainment 
& any ends consist in the blood and treasure of a great nation, 
hose who are answerable to that nation for the expenditure of 
hat blood and treasure must well weigh the value of the 
Ejects which they pursue, and must remember that, if they 
hotild forget the just proportion between ends and means, the 
pod sense of the people whose affairs they manage will soon 
tap in to correct their errors, and to call them to a severe 
Mount for the evils of which they would have been the cause. 1 

1 February 6, 1855. 


No time was lost by the reorganised Cabinet in 
remedying some of the most pressing evils which had 
borne down our army in the Crimea. Lord Palmerston, 
in announcing to the House of Commons the formation 
of his Government, detailed also some of his new ad- 
ministrative measures. The office of Secretary at War 
was to be amalgamated with that of the Secretary of 
State in the person of Lord Panmure; a Bill was 
immediately to be introduced for the enlistment of 
older men on short service ; the Admiralty was to es- 
tablish a special Board to superintend the transport 
service ; lastly, a sanitary commission was to be sent to 
the Crimea, and another, under Sir John McNeil, to 
superintend the commissariat. I append Lord Pal- 
merston's letter to Lord Eaglan accompanying the 
Sanitary Commission : — 

Downing Street : February 22, 1855. 

This will be given to you by Dr. Sutherland, Chief of the 
Sanitary Commission, consisting of himself, Dr. Gavin, and Mr. 
Bawlinson, whom we have sent out to put the hospitals, the 
port, and the camp into a less unhealthy condition than haf 
hitherto existed, and I request that you will give them everj 
assistance and support in your power. They will, -of course, be 
opposed and thwarted by the medical officers, by the men who 
have charge of the port arrangements, and by those who have 
the cleaning of the camp. Their mission will be ridiculed, and 
their recommendations and directions set aside, unless enforced 
by the peremptory exercise of your authority. 

But that authority I must request you to exert in the mort 
peremptory manner for the immediate and exact carrying into 
execution whatever changes of arrangement they may recom- 
mend ; for these are matters on which depend the health and 
lives of many hundreds of men, I may indeed say of thousand*. 
It is scarcely to be expected that officers, whether military or 
medical, whose time is wholly occupied by the pressing bufiine* 
of each day, should be able to give their attention or their time 
to the matters to which these commissioners have for many 
years devoted their action and their thoughts. 

But the interposition of men skilled in this way is urgently 
required. The hospital at Scutari is become a hotbed of 
pestilence, and if no proper precautions are taken before the 


son's rays begin to be felt, your camp will become one vast seat 
of the most virulent plague. I hope this commission will 
arrive in time to prevent much evil, but I am very sure that 
not one hour should be lost after their arrival in carrying into 
effect the precautionary and remedial measures which they may 

The patriotic impatience, however, of a certain 
section of ambitious politicians was so great that they 
wold not wait. Before five days had elapsed Mr. 
Layard again drew attention to the state of the army, 
and, in a speech decidedly hostile to Lord Palmerston's 
Administration, recommended that, in imitation of the 
French revolutionary Convention, the House should 
send out some of its own members to sit in judgment 
<m the guilty. In reply to this, Lord Palmerston, 
amid general laughter, suggested that it might be satis- 
factory to the House to take the honourable member at 
Ids word, and to add to the direction that he and his 
colleagues should proceed instantly to the Crimea, the 
forther instruction that they should remain there during 
Hie rest of the session. 

As to Mr. Koebuck's committee, Lord Palmerston 
still retained his objection to it, as not in accordance 
With the Constitution or efficient for its purpose. He 
told the House that, as an English king once rode up 
to an insurrection and offered to be its leader, 1 so the 
Government offered to the House of Commons to be its 
committee, and would do of itself all that it was 
possible to do. As, however, Mr. Roebuck still per- 
tisted, ' aiming/ as he said, to ' assist the noble Lord in 
infusing new vigour into the Constitution of the country,' 
Lord Palmerston yielded, giving as his reason for so 
doing that the country asked for an inquiry, and that, 
whatever inconvenience there might be in such a 
coarse, there would be greater inconvenience and danger 
if the government of the country were again to be in 
abeyance. This concession, however, produced another 
ministerial crisis, which was, however, of short dura- 

1 Richard II. in Wat Tyler's insurrection. 


tion. Sir James Graham, Mr. Gladstone, and Mr. Sid- 
ney Herbert retired because the renewed motion wu& 
not to be resisted ; and Sir Charles Wood, Sir George 
Lewis, and Lord John Russell took the vacant places. 

The death of the Emperor Nicholas and the actire 
alliance of Sardinia with the Western Powers were both 
events which appeared likely to affect favourably for 
peace the negotiations which had now been renewed at 
Vienna. Lord John Russell, who went to the Con- 
ference as English representative, was instructed that 
the end to be held in view was the admission of Turkey 
into the great European family, and that there were 
certain points which must be insisted on as necessary 
fully to attain this object. They lay under four princi- 
pal heads, namely, the Principalities, the free navigation 
of the Danube, Russian supremacy in the Black Sea, and 
the independence of the Porte. Lord Palmerston writes 
to Lord John Russell private instructions : — 

Piccadilly : March 28, 1855. 

I fear from all you have said to Clarendon, public and 
private, that there is no chance of the new Emperor of Russia 
agreeing to the only conditions which would afford us security 
for the future, and though some few people here would applaud 
us for making peace on almost any conditions, yet the bulk of 
the nation would soon see through the flimsy veil with which 
we should have endeavoured to disguise entire failure in attain- 
ing the objects for which we undertook the war, and we should 
receive the general condemnation which we should rightly 

The Austrians, the Prussians, and the Russian agents of 
course trumpet forth the vast value of the concessions made ty 
Russia by her acceptance of the four points as a basis of negotia- 
tion ; but the whole value and practical effect of those pointe 
must depend upon the manner in which they are worked out, 
and, according to the schemes of Gortschakoff and Prokesh, the 
vaunted concessions would be reduced to absolute nullity. The 
two important points of the four are the first and the third; 
the second lays down a principle not new, but always admitted 
even by Russia herself, though in practice she contrived to 
evade the carrying of it out. The fourth point Russia felt to be 


-only the relinquishment of a pretension which could not be 
enforced by arms when England and France resolved to back 
Turkey, and the admission involved in the Russian acceptance 
of this fourth point does not take from her one particle of her 
power of future aggression against Turkey, though it saves 
Turkey from a source of great internal weakness. But the 
pretension was one which Russia had yet to make good, and she 
<xrald not make it good against Turkey supported by England 
and France. 

The first point is very important, because the object the allies 
iad in view to be attained by it is to emancipate the Princi- 
palities from foreign interference and to tie them more closely 
to the Sultan, while, at the same time, security should be given 
them for the maintenance of local self-government, and for 
those privileges of religion, internal administration, and com- 
merce which are essential to their welfare and prosperity* For 
these purposes it is plain that their Constitution should be im- 
proved and liberalised, that their Prince should be appointed 
by the Sultan, with the only condition that he should be one of 
the Sultan's Christian subjects. That the Constitution, which, 
ought to include a representative system, should be granted 
{octroy?) by the Sovereign, confirmed by him by the most 
■solemn sanction, and communicated by him to the contracting 
Powers. Such an arrangement would seem to be a sufficient 
.guarantee, considering that there has been no complaint by the 
two provinces that the Sultan has endeavoured to infringe on 
their privileges or to curtail their liberties. The only evil to 
he guarded against is the recurrence of that intermeddling in 
the internal affairs of the provinces by a foreign Power, and 
those military occupations of those two provinces by foreign 
troops, which have led to the conflicts between the Powers of 

Now, the scheme of Gortschakoff and Prokesh, so far from 
attaining the objects we have in view, would have the effect of 
riveting the foreign shackles which Russia has sought to fasten 
on the Principalities, adding to their tightness and their weight, 
4Qd fo""g them down by the assistance and co-operation of 
Austria, with the formal sanction and approval of England and 

The treacherous game of Austria and Russia is manifest 
*&<! palpable. They propose to England and France the most 
objectionable arrangements on the first, second, and fourth 
joints. They tell England and France, or, at least, Austria 


suggests to England and France, that it would be necessary for 
those two Powers to agree to these objectionable conditions, in 
order to secure the co-operation of Austria on the third point, 
the most important to the Western Powers. And what would 
be the result I Why that which follows all such bargains with 
his sable majesty : we should have paid the price without ob- 
taining the thing we wanted to buy. Austria evidently means 
to throw us over on the third point ; and if that is to happen, 
the sooner we are undeceived as to her intentions the better. 

Her substitutes for a narrow limitation of the Russian 
Black Sea fleet, are, as you say, futile. The opening of the 
Straits would be a standing danger to the Sultan, with no 
compensating advantage, but, on the contrary, with probable 
inconvenience to England and France. The maintenance by 
as and the French of permanent fleets in the Black Sea to 
counterbalance the fleet of Russia, is simply a mawcaMt jMr 
scmterie. The stipulation that Russia should not have a larger 
fleet than she now has, even assuming that the sunken ships 
are not to count, would still leave her with too powerful a 
naval force ; and it must be remembered that it is easy to 
build steamers which, though unarmed at first, may easily be 
strengthened and turned into ships-of-war. The neutrality 
scheme of Drouyn might do, if confined to the Black Sea and 
the Sea of Azoff, but it would probably be as distasteful to 
Russia as our own proposals. The truth is we are in the 
middle of a battle, and our adversary seems determined to try 
the fate of arms, though it is clearly for his interest not to do 
so. Possibly this Czar might find more difficulty in yielding 
than his father might have done. However, I presume a few 
days will now give a turn to affairs. Drouyn comes here to- 
morrow on his way to Vienna, whither he is going to stiffen 

We are getting on very fairly in the House of Commons* 
and people there are behaving very well towards the Govern- 

I am taking charge of the current business of the Colonid 
Office, in order to know a little about it, and because I thought 
it began to press a little too much on George Grey's health. 1 
did not, however, state that latter reason to him, but put it 
upon the first, my proposal to take charge. 

Whilst there was a chance of peace issuing out of 
the doings at Vienna, Lord Palmerston was consider- 


hat were the reforms which would have to be 
ided from the Sultan. Letters have been already 
1 to show how constantly he .urged upon the 
that complete equality between Christian and 
medans was the only means whereby the Otto- 
empire could be permanently strengthened ; and 
i following letter he summarises what he was pre- 
to press upon the Porte. He also advocated the 
ishment of primary schools in which Christian 
Mussulman children should receive elementary 
ction together : — 

May 14, 1855. 
r dear Clarendon, — What remains to be done for the 
formists in Turkey would be, I apprehend, speaking 

capacity for military service by voluntary enlistment 

and eligibility to rise to any rank in the army. 
Admission of non-Mussulman evidence in civil as well 
as criminal cases. 

Establishment of mixed courts of justice (with ah equal 
number of Christian and Mussulman judges) for all 
cases in which Mahomedans and non-Mahomedans are 

, Appointment of a Christian officer as assessor to every 
governor of a province when that governor is a Mus- 
sulman ; such assessor to be of suitable rank and to 
have full liberty to appeal to Constantinople against any 
act of the governor unjust, oppressive, or corrupt. 

Eligibility of Christiana to all places in the admUfcra- 
tion, whether at Constantinople or in the provinces* 
and a practical application of this rule by the appoint- 
ment of Christians at once to some places of trust, 
civil and military. 
The total abolition of the present system by which offices 
at Constantinople and in the provinces are bought and 
sold and given to unfit and unworthy men for money 
paid or promised. Such men become tyrants in their 
offices, either from incapacity or bad passions, or from 
a desire to repay themselves the money paid for their 

ere ought not only to be complete toleration of non-Mus- 

i religion, but all punishment on converts from Islam, 

yr natives or foreigners, ought to be abolished. 



This would have been a very complete programme 
of civil and religious emancipation, could only the in- 
struments have been found to carry it out thoroughly 
and honestly. But thorough and honest instruments 
can never be found under such a blighting and corrupt 
despotism as that of the Sultan of Turkey. The depths 
of criminal recklessness and indifference to which it 
habitually descends is illustrated by the following 
Memorandum of Lord Palmerston's, from which tt 
appears that the very first loan the Turkish Govern- fc 
ment ever raised — a loan paid to them at the vetf i 
height of war, and for the purposes of their struggle far 
national existence, was being deliberately squandered ty 
their sovereign on favourites and on personal luxuries, 
while the fortress of Kara and its gallant defenders were 
being abandoned to their fate. We were pouring water 
into a cracked vase : no wonder that it was all use- 
lessly spilt : — 

Should we not be justified in saying to the Turkish Govern- 
ment that we will not advance any more of the loan which *• 
have guaranteed until these extravagant prodigalities have beat 
put an end to 1 We shall not be able to justify to Parliament 
our having incurred pecuniary responsibility to assist tbt 
Turkish Government in carrying on the war if it turns aflfc' 
that our guarantee has thus been made subservient to wasted 
expenditure for personal and private purposes. The Tarkttk 
troops are in arrear of their pay. We are told that commiaaariit 
supplies are stopped for want of money. Kars and its brait 
army are lost because the Turkish Government has not supplied 
pay, provisions, and munitions of war to them; and at thfr 
crisis, when a proper sense of duty would have led the Sultan ti 
stint himself, in order to find money for the defence of his throw 
and empire, he launches into extravagance in repairing asi 
building palaces, and he nearly doubles the amount of money 
applied to his personal expenses and to the allowances to men* ' 
bers of his family. This is scandalous. 

P. 16-12-55. 

The second Vienna Conference broke up without any 
result being arrived at, Eussia declining to accede to 
the fixed limitations sought to be imposed on her naval 


in the Black Sea. Lord Palmerston had some 

Ity during these Conferences in keeping our ally 

ibu Napoleon's bugbear was a German Con- 

against France, and this inclined him to back 

proposals of Austria, with a view to remaining 

moly terms with her, so as to secure her neutrality. 

war also had never been so popular in France 

was in England, and the French appeared too 

to accept terms which the English Government 

fht insufficient. In the following letter the Em- 

of the French is urged not to allow a subtle 

to rob him of the fruits of victory. The 

r [inistry had just obtained a large majority in 

House of Commons on Mr. Disraeli's resolution 
ling ' dissatisfaction with the ambiguous language 
uncertain conduct of Her Majesty's Government.' 

Londres : Mai 28, 1855. 

>, — V otre Majesty a daigne me permettre de vous exprimer 
de temps en temps dans des occasions importantes. 
done vous soumettre que la proposition que nous fait 
de prononcer dans la Conference de Yienne le mot 
ition,' nest qu'un piege qu'on nous tend. 
Principe de Limitation n'a aucune valeur pour nous, tout 
dn Chiffre. La Russie pourrait bien accepter le principe 
que nous fussions pour cela plus pres d'une paix sure et 
tble. Mais par une telle acceptation, la Russie nous 
it dans un dedale de negotiations qui amolliraient les 
en France, en Angleterre, en Allemagne, partout, et 
en Crimee ; car ces negotiations oisivos et illusoires em- 
dent de conduire 6nergiquement la guerre, et ne nous 
Indent pas a faire la paix. La position de la France et de 
MjLeterre n'est-elle pas simple et claire? Nous avons fait 
t Rustrie des propositions qu'on ne peut critiquor qu'en les 
Honcant trop liblrales en vers notre ennemi ; ces propositions, 
Etussie les a rejetees avec fiert6, on pourrait mftme le dire, 
o insolence. Qu'avons-nous a faire done, excepts de nous 
Mare a obtenir des succes par la guerre ; pourquoi nous bumi- 
' en faisant de nouvelles propositions a la Russie, et en quit- 
t le terrain oil nous nous dtions places ? Ce terrain n'ent 
le principe de Limitation, mais une Limitation d^finie et 
bante a nos yeux pour parer aux dangers de l'avenir. 


Je sens bien que nous n'avons pas le droit de soumei 
Y. M. des considerations puisees dans notre situation intW 
mais peut-$tre V. M. me permettra de remarquer que le 
vernement anglais vient de remporter une grande victoaw 
lementaire : nous avons eu a la Chambre des Comnn 
vendredi soir, une majority de 100 voix, et contre f 
attaque ? Contre une accusation que nous nous occupions d 
negotiation inutile et peu honorable, tandis que nous dn 
nous occuper uniquement de remporter des sucoes dans la gofli 
La Chambre a compris, d'apres les explications que noil 
avons donnees, que les negotiations 6taient suspendnes 'i 
die/ et que la guerre se poursuiyait avec vigueur. Si aprili 
nous nous trouvions replonges dans le Labyrinths de YM 
seulement et uniquement pour faciliter a TAutriche le aq 
de faire une communication a Frankfort, j'en craindtii 
suites chez nous. On nous dit chaque semaine, l il ne fast 
que l'Autriche nous echappe,' mais nous ne la tenons pas end! 
et jamais nous ne la tiendrons, tant que nous ne nous so] 
montres les plus forts. 

Yictorieux en Crimee nous commanderons l'amit&ypenM 
m&me l'epee, de TAutriche ; manquant de succes en CW 
nous n'aurons pas m&me sa plume. Yoici le Poste import 
de Jenikale qui est tomb6 entre nos mains, voila Anapa qri 
suivre la meme destinee, en peu de semaines nous serous™ 
de Sevastopol et de la force flottante des Busses ; ne permeW 
done pas a la Diplomatic de nous ravir les grands et import 
avantages que nous sommes sur le point de recueillir. 

Napoleon's Court and Ministers were much m 
up in speculations and affairs on the Bourse, and it 
by the Bourse-mongers at Paris that the cry for pc 
at any price was stimulated. Count Persigny 
Lord Palmerston that as often as the Emperor rece 
the English answers differing from his pacific propa 
he always smiled and said, ' After all, the English 
right. 5 

The last formal sitting of the Conference had 1 
held on April 26. Lord John Eussell, who had fevo 1 
the Austrian propositions of peace, returned to Eng 
to find the Cabinet indisposed to accept them, on 
ground that they would legalize by treaty the stal 
things which had been declared to be a menac 


'turkey. His first impulse was to resign, therein fol- 
jwing the example of Monsieur Drouyn de Lhuys, the 
tench Minister, who had also expressed his assent to 
Jaunt Buol's proposals. Yielding, however, to the 
^presentations of his colleagues, he remained a mem- 
ber of the Government till July, when Sir E. Lytton, 
faring given notice of a motion in the House of Com- 
mons directly aimed at him and his conduct at Vienna, 
lie relieved the Government of the embarrassment 
Kfairal to such an attack by retiring from the Adminis- 
tration. Not only all the supporters of the Govern- 
feent, but nearly all its members out of the Cabinet, 
bd come to th$ opinion that this step was necessary. 

During the whole of this session the Opposition and 
lie Radicals poured an incessant fire on the Treasury 
tench, discharging their artillery from very different 
raarters though concentrating it in the same direction. 
The Opposition wished the country to believe that the 
lovernment were careless of the honour and prestige 
f England, and were too ready to make peace at any 
■ice ; while the Manchester school, on the other hand, 
iking Lord John KusselTs attitude at Vienna as their 
sxt, enlarged on the folly and wickedness of the war. 
jord Palmerston, although almost single-handed, met 
bese attacks with success. He had the confidence of 
ha country, who saw in his character that mixture 
t moderation and firmness which the circumstances 
equired. He struck the keynote of the public tone 
rhen, in a debate on August 7, he referred to what had 
teen alleged as to the assent of the Turkish ambassador 
o those proposals of the Vienna Conference which the 
English and French Cabinets had subsequently rejected, 
aid asserted that the objects of the war were wider 
han could depend upon the decision of the Turkish 
Government. The protection of Turkey was a means 
an end ; behind the protection of Turkey was the 
greater question of repressing the grasping ambition of 
tassia, and preventing the extinction of political and 
ommercial liberty. The Governments of France and 


thousand men. It is not unreasonable to suppose that 
if they had been really wanted we should never have 
had the chance given to us of declining with thanb 
their proffered services. 

Lord Palraerston now foresaw, with the daily de- 
crease of the dangers which accompany war, the near 
approach of dangers from diplomacy. He writes to his 
brother : — 

Piccadilly : August 25, 1855. 
I am kept in town for the present, but hope to go down to 
Broadlands in the first week of September, subject to weekly 
attendances here in London on matters connected with the con- 
duct of the war. Things in that matter are looking welL Our 
bombardment of Sweabourg and our successes in repulsing the 
Russians in the Crimea will, I hope, be followed by the capture 
of Sebastopol and the expulsion of the Russians from the 
Crimea. Our danger will then begin — a danger of peace, and 
not a danger of war. Austria will try to draw us again into 
negotiations for an insufficient peace, and we shall not yet have 
obtained those decisive successes which would entitle us to in- 
sist on such terms as will effectually curb the ambition of 'Rubra 
for the future. 

I must try to fight the battle of negotiation as well as the 
battle of war, and, fortunately, the spirit of the British nation 
will support us. I wish I could reckon with equal confidence 
on the steady determination of the French. 

King Bomba's insult to England, through the British mis- 
sion at Naples, must be properly atoned for. Clarendon being 
at Paris, nothing can be decided till he returns and the Cabinet 
can be assembled ; but I have written to Clarendon to say that 
my opinion is that we ought to insist upon the immediate dis- 
missal of Massa, 1 and upon a promise that he shall never again 
be employed in any public capacity. I would not make this 
demand till our reserve squadron — now in attendance on the 
Queen, but which will return with her on Tuesday, and which 
consists of three line-of-battle ships — shall have anchored in the 
Bay of Naples, opposite the King's palace, and shall have taken 
on board the mission and the consul, and then I would have a 
boat sent on shore with a demand that in two hours an answer 
should be sent by the King saying that Massa was dismissed, 
allowing half an hour for the letter to go, half an hour for the 
answer to come back, and a whole hour for writing the answer. 

1 Minister of Police at Naples. 


[f the time passed without a satisfactory reply, the place should 
share the fate of Sweabourg ; e poi dopo, if that should not be 
sufficient. However, we shall see what resolution may be come 
to when the Cabinet meets on the question. 

The King of Naples had acted a very unfriendly 
port during our war with Russia. He had forbidden, 
within his territory, the sale of horses, mules, or other 
supplies to English agents. He gave way in this 
matter of the Minister of Police as soon as he heard 
of our success at Sebastopol, which happened very 
shortly afier /the date of this letter. 

vol. n. 





In September came the news of the fall of SebastopoL 
Austria, who had never relaxed her efforts to brinf 
about an accommodation, now renewed her endeavours, 
and found in France a much more pliable subject to deal 
with than England. The French Emperor was assailed 
on all sides by a ' feu d'enfer ' of Russian and Austrian 
intrigue trying to shake his constancy and to drive him 
to some act of weakness. One such act that he medi- 
tated at this moment, and that it required all the 
weight of English persuasion to arrest, was the recall 
of a considerable number of his troops home from the 

The Austrian and French Cabinets, however, very 
much mistook the intention of this country if they 
imagined that we were going to surrender ourselves 
blindly into the hands of our allies without folly 
exercising our own rights and judgment. On Novem- 
ber 21, Lord Palmerston thus writes to the Comte de 
Persigny, French ambassador in London : — 

Piccadilly: 21 Novembre 1855. 
Mon cher Comte, — D'apr&s notre Constitution et notre 
Regime Parlementaire, le pouvoir exdcutif ne doit jamais feire 
une d-marche aussi importante que celle dont il s'agit, outf 
avoir des pieces officielles-a produire au Parlement, afin d'etre i 
m&me d'expliquer clairement ce qui a 6t6 propose a FAngleterre, 
par quels motifs la proposition a 6t6 appuy£e, et quelles on 6t6 
les raisons qui ont conseilte son adoption. 



Mais, jusqu'a present, nous n'avons rien de tout cela. II y 
i en a Vienne une negociation a laquelle nous n'avons pas pris 
part; on a signe*, du moins paraphe, un protocole pour nous, 
m&is sans nous ; on nous communique confidentiellement ce pro- 
tocole paraphe*, a prendre ou a laisser, en nous disant qu'il faut 
ou le rejeter ou l'accepter immediatement, bon ou mauvais, sans 
en discuter la redaction et les details. 

Cette maniere d'agir dans une affaire tellement grave ne 
nous convient pas. Nous souhaitons nous conformer aux d6sirs 
te l'Empereur, mais il faut que nous soyons en regie vis-a-vis 
fe notre Parlement ; et nous ne pouvons pas souscrire a une 
ffoposition de paix a etre faite en notre nom, a la Russie, sans 
[ue nous soyons entierement d'accord et sur la forme et sur la 
obstance d'une telle proposition. II est done indispensable que 
008 ayons une proposition par ecrit, dont nous puissions 
fan examiner la redaction, avant de pouvoir donner a 1' Autriche 
antorisation qu'elle nous demande, de parler a la Russie en 
otre nom. 

Je dis parler en notre nom, parce que, malgre que l'Autriche 
J& s'approprier la demarche qu'elle voudrait faire a Peters- 
wrg, elle se propose de dire qu'elle salt d'avance que sa pro- 
Mtidon serait adoptee par la France et l'Angleterre, si elle 
»ait a $tre acceptee par la Russie. 

La nation anglaise serait enchantee d'une bonne paix qui 
Burat les objets de la guerre ; maisplut6t que d'etre entrainee 
signer une paix a des conditions insumsantes, elle prefererait 
ntinuer la guerre sans d'autres allies que la Turquie, et elle 
Bent tout-a-fait en etat d'en soutenir le fardeau, et de se tirer 
osi d'afiaire* Soumettez, je vous prie, ces observations a 
r alewsky. 

These observations were not unnecessary, because 
ount Buol had already persuaded France to favour 
is proposal that the Black Sea arrangements should 
) contained in a separate treaty between Russia and 
arkey. Four days after this letter, Count Persigny 
me to urge, at Downing Street, acquiescence in this 
rangement, but he met with a distinct refusal. 

'We ought to stand firm/ said Lord Palmerston, 'as to 
ring all the stipulations about the Black Sea made parts of 
) Treaty between Russia and all the belligerents. I can fancy 
w I shouldtfbe hooted in the House of Commons if I were to 

Y 2 


get up and Ray that we had agreed to an imperfect and unsatis- 
factory arrangement about one of the most important parts of 
the whole matter, as a personal favour to Count Buol, or to 
save the amour-propre of Russia. I had better beforehand 
take the Chiltern Hundreds.' 1 

Towards the end of the year, when winter had 
caused hostilities to cease, Count Buol put forward, in 
the name of Austria, four new points, which in sub- 
stance were nearly the same as the four old points. 
The third, on which the former negotiations had broken 
off, proposed that no fleet and no naval station of any 
country should be permitted in the Black Sea. The 
Czar, on January 16, 1856, accepted these proposals as 
a basis for negotiating a treaty of peace ; although, of 
course, there were other points, many and difficult, to 
be settled by subsequent negotiation. Sir Hamilton 
Seymour was now our ambassador at Vienna. He wa* 
one of the ablest members of our diplomacy, and Lord 
Palmerston felt that he could speak proudly to him in 
reply to Austrian pressure without leading him into 

94 Piccadilly : January 24, 1886. 
My dear Seymour, — Buol's statement to you the night be- 
fore last was what in plain English we should call impertinent. 
We are happily not yet in such a condition that an Austrian 
minister should bid us sign a treaty without hesitation or 
conditions. The Cabinet of Vienna, forsooth, must insist upon 
our doing so ! Why, really our friend Buol must have had hk 
head turned by his success at St. Petersburg, and quite forgot 
whom he was addressing such language to. He should re- | 
member that he is a self-constituted mediator, but that nobody 
has made him umpire, arbiter, or dictator. He may depend 
upon it we shall do no such thing. We shall not sign without 
knowing what it is that we are signing. We shall not sign un- 
less we are satisfied with that which we may be asked to put 
our names to. Pray tell him so, and say to him privately from 
me, with my best regards and compliments, that we feel very 
sincerely obliged to him for his friendly and firm conduct in 
these recent transactions, that we accepted, with the addition 

1 To Lord Clarendon, November 26, 1856* 


of our own supplementary conditions, the arrangement which 
he proposed to us, because we felt that it contained all that, 
in lie present state of things, we were entitled to exact from 
Russia, subject, of course, to any further demands which the 
fifth article provides for and authorises us to make. 

But it is Russia rather than the allies who ought to feel 
grateful to him for his good offices in these matters, because we 
are confident that if the war goes on, the results of another 
campaign will enable us this time twelvemonth to obtain from 
Russia much better conditions than those which we are now 
willing to accept. 

We know the exhaustion, the internal pressure, difficulties, 
and distress of Russia quite as well as Buol does ; but we know 
better than he does our own resources and strength. He may 
rest assured, however, that we have no wish to continue the 
war for the prospect of what we may accomplish another year, 
if we can now obtain peace upon the conditions which we 
deem absolutely necessary and essential; but we are quite 
prepared to go on if such conditions cannot be obtained. The 
British nation is unanimous in this matter. I say unanimous, 
for I cannot reckon Cobden, Bright, and Co. for anything ; and 
even if the Government were not kept straight by a sense of 
our public duty, the strong feeling which prevails throughout 
the country would make it impossible for us to swerve. So 
pray let Count Buol keep his threats for elsewhere, and not send 
them over here. 

On February 1 a protocol was signed at Vienna by 
Bie representatives of the five Powers, and the congress 
for the final settlement of the terms of peace was ap- 
pointed to meet in Paris. 

To this Congress Lord Clarendon went as British 
plenipotentiary, in concert with Lord Cowley. During 
its sittings Lord Palmerston was in constant correspon- 
dence with him, and entered, with indefatigable in- 
dustry, into the smallest details. They had, however, 
a difficult task in the negotiations. The Russians, 
although beaten, were not inclined to yield one inch, 
save to absolute necessity, and the French were too 
eager for peace to be depended upon for much assist- 
ance. The Emperor himself was swayed by Count 
Walewski's many Russian affinities; lie was horrified 


by the daily accounts of the privations endured by his 
army in the Crimea, and he was absorbed in a domestic 
event which had given him an heir, whom he was anxious 
to christen amid the rejoicings for peace. He was, 
therefore, only thinking of how to 'faire le g6n6rem' 
towards the Czar, whom he would gladly have con- 
ciliated now that his position in Europe was secured. 
Amid all such secret motives and tortuous actions the 
British Government had to hold on its way, now and 
then yielding on minor matters, but adhering firmly to 
the principal conditions of peace. In this it succeeded; 
and on March 30 the Treaty of Paris was signed. 

A few days later, the plenipotentiaries also sub- 
scribed a declaration about maritime war. 

At the beginning of hostilities Great Britain had 
tacitly abandoned her ancient doctrines respecting 
neutrals, which she could only have attempted to en- 
force under pain of having all mankind against her. 
It was evident that they could never be revived, and 
that the concessions which she had once made to 
neutral rights could never be withdrawn. When, 
therefore, the President of the Congress, in the name 
of his Government, suggested to the English plenipo-. 
tentiary that it would be a ' benevolent ' act for the 
Congress to proclaim as permanent the principles upon 
which the war had been carried on, with the addition 
that privateering should be abolished, 1 Lord Clarendon 

1 Original Draft of Hrsolution lianded to Lord Clarendon. — 'Le 
congres de Westphalie a consacrG la liberty des cultes, le congres de 
Vienne l'abolition de la traite des noirs et la liberte de la navigation 
des fie uves ; il appartiendrait au congres de Paris de consacrer lwx>H- 
tion de la course et la franchise da commerce des neutres, conforme- 
mcnt aux principes appliqu6s dans la guerre actuelle. 

' Ces principes sont. d'apres les declarations gmanees de la France et 
de l'Angleterre au debut de la guerre : 

' Que le pavilion neutre couvre la marchandise ennemie, excepte la 
contrebande de guerre. f? 

« Que la marchandise neutre, excepte la contrebanfle de guerre, n'est 
pas saisissable sous pavilion enncmi. 

' Et que les blocus doivent etre cifectifs, c'est-a-dire maintenus par 
line force navale suffisante.' 

The Americans had previously, by a circular, asked the assent of the 


referred the matter home, and, with the approval of the 
Queen and of the entire Cabinet, conveyed the assent 
of the British plenipotentiaries to the proposal, point- 
ing out at the same time, as a necessary proviso, ' that 
the declaration should not be binding except between 
those Powers who have acceded or shall accede to it.' 
This clause was added, and certain other modifications 
made in the declaration before it was finally settled. 
Its policy is not a matter for discussion here ; but the 
Act of its having been deliberately adopted by the 
English Cabinet, for what they considered good and 
sufficient reasons, is the point which it is desirable to 
record, as many absurd tales have been from time to 
time current about it : as though the English plenipo- 
tentiary had agreed to it without any authority from 
home or consultation with the rest of the Ministry. 

On May 5, an animated and prolonged debate took 
place in the House of Commons on the treaty of peace. 
Lord Palmerston spoke on the second night of the 
<liflcussion from twelve o'clock till half-past two, and 
exhaustively defended the acts of the Government. The 
following day he moved a vote of thanks to the navy 
and army. 

Thus ended the Crimean war — a war which, how- 
ever some men may look back to it with regret, on 
account of the incapacity since shown by the Turks for 
profiting by the breathing-time afforded to them, was 
certainly just, and possibly necessary. It cost England 
some 25,000 men, and fifty millions in money, but Rus- 
sian overbearance and greed of dominion received a 
wholesome, if only temporary, check, and, had the war 
continued a little longer, would have been still more 
severely punished. The plans proposed to the Allies for 
the ensuing campaign embraced operations in Circassia 

ttaritime Powers tojjhe doctrine of ' free ships, free goods.* Most of 
the Powers consultevSngland as to the answer they should give, and, 
in accordance with our views, answered that they should not agree 
unless the United States at the same time gave up the system of 
privateers. This they declined to do ; but by the Declaration of Paris 
they are left to stand alone in their anachronism. 


and Finland ; the English to have chief command in 
the South, and the French in the North. The Shah 
of Persia had promised certain facilities on the Caspian 
in view of a campaign in Georgia, and a Treaty with 
Sweden had already been signed the previous December. 
It is not impossible that the result might have been the 
restoration of Finland to Sweden, of her lost provinces 
to Persia, and the independence of Circassia. 

Only twenty years, however, elapsed before Bussia 
and Turkey again found themselves in hand-to-hand 
conflict; but this time they fought alone. Neither 
France nor England intervened, and the Turk had to 
maintain the struggle without allies. There were plenty 
of reasons, both foreign and domestic, why French- 
men in 1877 should be unwilling to fight anew for a 
cause about which even in 1854 they were, as a nation, 
wholly indifferent. But, at first sight, ib appeared to 
many that Englishmen were, to say the least, incon- 
sistent when they successfully protested against being 
a second time led to war with Russia in behalf of 
Turkey. This was a very superficial view of the case, 
as the circumstances of the two periods were wholly 
different. In 1877 the Eussian Czar came forward to 
free a nationality. This, at any rate, was the osten- 
sible object as well as the inevitable result of his acts, 
whatever secret aims and unavowed motives may hate 
also been at work. At the time of the Crimean war 
not only was there no such justificatory pretext put 
forward, but had there been it would have found no 
echo in England, because the Bulgarian people were 
not deemed to be in a condition to profit by any such 
demands made in their behalf. But during the years 
which elapsed between the Congress of Paris and the 
Conference at Constantinople education, wealth, and 
general civilization had, by various agencies, so spread 
among the Slavs of Turkey, that Ldfrd Palnierston'a 
dictum, as to there being among them no elements 
capable of self-government, was rapidly becoming an 
anachronism. He himself, had he been alive, would 

BUSSIA AND TUKKEY IN 1854 AND 1877. 329 

tare been the first to recognize this ; nor, if we may 
judge by his conduct at the time of the establishment 
of the Greek Kingdom, would he have been among the 
mogt laggard in action to endow them with whatever 
measure of freedom they were capable of receiving. 
Again, the antecedents of Czar Nicholas and of his son 
were entirely different — in other words, the Russia of 
1854 presented to the world a totally different aspect 
from the Russia of 1877. The Emperor Nicholas in 
Mi haughty arrogance and imperious conduct was but 
the representative and embodiment of what had been 
the aggressive policy of his empire for many years. 
The duel between him and Lord Palmerston, as the 
official representative of British honour and interests, 
only culminated in the Crimean war. During earlier 
years it had been fiercely maintained, while almost 
dramatic in its personal incidents. Persia, India, Po- 
land, Hungary and the outlying parts of Turkey had ip. 
torn been the ground of contest. That a check to the 
continual encroachments of Russia was required had 
become a cardinal point in the creed of almost every 
European statesman. The Emperor Alexander, on the 
- eontrary, was not only credited with a distaste for 
wa^, and with a conciliatory disposition, but also had 
never shown himself a disturber of the peace. His 
noblest triumph — namely, the emancipation of the serfs 
—had been at home. When at last he did proceed to 
carry his arms abroad he had patiently waited till the 
unanimous voice of Europe at the Constantinople Con- 
ference pronounced that, in the actual controversy, he 
was right and his adversary wrong. Lastly, the Govern- 
ment of the Turk stood before the eyes of the English 
people in a very different light from that with which 
hope had surrounded it in 1854. That Lord Palmer- 
ston and most of the statesmen of that period believed 
in the probable reform and regeneration of Ottoman rule, 
is not only an undoubted truth, but the only justifica- 
tion of the policy which they so long and so earnestly 
maintained. But when Lord Russell, in 1860, in a let- 


ter to Lord Palmerston, stated his fears that ' nothing, 
but honesty and energy in a degree that are not to 
be found at Constantinople can restore the Turkish 
Empire/ he was only giving expression to convictions 
which were beginning to dawn everywhere. It came to 
pass, therefore, that when, after twenty years of profound 
peace, and the command during that time of immense 
Bums of money which the capitalists of Europe had 
poured into the lap of Turkey, her Government proved 
worse and her corruption greater than before the English 
people thought her case hopeless, and wisely preferred 
to let her get though her troubles with Russia unas- 
sisted and alone. 

But to return to 1856. Difficulties shortly arose 
respecting the execution of some of the articles of the 
treaty of peace. A Turkish officer had been sent to 
take possession of Serpent's Island, at the mouth of the 
Danube, and the Turkish flag was hoisted. Soon after- 
wards a party of seven Russian marines, with a lieu- 
tenant, landed and occupied the island. The Russian 
Government declined to remove them, on the ground that 
the question of its occupation was to be settled by a 
Conference at Paris. The English admiral then sta- 
tioned a vessel off the island, with orders to prevent, by 
force if necessary, all attempts to increase the Russian 
force on the island. So matters remained till the aid ■ 
of the year. 

Another point in dispute was as to the identification j 
of a place marked Bolgrad on the map. The treaty '■ 
said that the new frontier was to run ' south of Bolgrad.' 
When the commissioners met to mark it out, they dis- 
covered that the real Bolgrad was much more to the 
south than the Bolgrad of the Conference maps* They 
were unable, therefore, to agree, and the matter, to- 
gether with the question of Serpent's Island, was referred 
to a new Conference. 

Lord Palmerston, in the following memorandum, j 
recounts his first interview with the new Russian am* 
bassador in London, and records what he said to him 
about these two disputed points : — 


Piccadilly, August 12, 1856. 
. Count Chreptovitch came to me this morning at half-past 
evea by appointment. He began by civil expressions of plea- 
se at renewal of old acquaintance, to which I replied in 
irilar terms. After some preliminary talk of this kind, I 
id I was sorry that, at Aur first interview on the renewal of 
pknnatic relations between the two Governments, I should 
.ve to enter upon a string of grievances. ' Well,' said he, 
jfc-UB hear them : what are they 1 ' I said I was sorry to 
we to say that, ever since the conclusion of the treaty of 
ice, the Russian Government has been acting in a manner 
msistent with its engagements, and has in some instances 
oken them, in others tried to .evade them. That the treaty 
itinetly says that the fortress and district of Kars are to 
restored to Turkey ; in violation of which engagement the 
tress had been demolished, and the Russian occupying 
•08 increased. The treaty says that a portion of Bessarabia 
to be restored to Turkey, and from the ratification of the 
aty that territory belonged of right to Turkey ; but in 
(regard of this, the Russians have destroyed the fortifications 
Ismail and Reni. Here Count Chreptovitch interrupted me 
th much impatience. He said these things were done, whether 
;ht or wrong, and there was no use in going back to past 
ents, and that we must look only to the future. I said I 
tirely differed from him ; I thought there was great use in 
Lug back to past events, and that they had, as I would pre- 
itty explain, a great bearing on the future. That I must be 
owed to tell him fully and plainly all I think on these 
titers ; that it was for the purpose of doing so that I had asked 
in to call upon me ; and that if he did not choose to listen to 
&, he had better go back to Petersburg. I then resumed. I 
id that these acts were not only at variance with the treaty, but 
lite unworthy of a great Power like Russia. If Russia had 
en able at the Congress of Paris to obtain stipulations that 
ere should be no defensive works at Kars, and no fortifica- 
os at Ismail and Reni, anc^that both those frontiers should 
' left open to the future attacks "of Russia — meditated attacks, 
r conduct would lead us to think, though I did not ask him 
admit that — if such stipulations could have been obtained, 
xmld have understood the value which Russia would have 
itched to them, and they would have been worth a struggle in 
» negotiation ; but as no such stipulations were made, the only 
xrt of demolishing Kars and Ismail and Reni would be to put 


the Turks to some expense and trouble in reconstn 
these works, and the probable result would be that 
would be rebuilt upon a better plan. This, therefore, wi 
ebullition of ill-humour and revenge that might be called do 
1 said, however, that we were glad to find that one part d 
grievance is about to ceaae, and that" Kars and its district 
be immediately evacuated by the Russians. The next pc 
had to complain of was the attempt to take possession d 
pent's Island. When the east and west boundary bet 
Russia and Turkey in Europe ran south of this island 
island naturally belonged to Russia ; but now that the en 
west boundary line will run a good way to the north of 
island, the island must naturally belong to Turkey. I slid 
the island has no intrinsic value as territory; that its 
value is that it is, by means of its lighthouse, a guiding poi 
ships making the mouths of the Danube, and on that aoooi 
must belong to the Powers to which the mouths of the Di 
belong. Count Chreptovitch said that the island is also h 
tant for ships going to Odessa, because when they happen, 
frequently the case, to be blown to the southward and < 
their course by adverse winds, the light on this island 
them where they are. I said that the light kept for th 
nube would do equally well for Odessa ; and that, being a 
point, I would observe, in passing, that we have been infc 
that the Russian detachment which landed to take possess 
the island, finding a superior force of Turks there, endear 
to induce the Turks to violate their duty, and either to go 
and give up the island to the Russians, or to desert over i 
Russian service. Count Chreptovitch seemed to admit the 
of the reasoning that the change of the boundary line in 
quarters must throw this island into the Turkish limits. 

I then went on to Bessarabia. I said that the Empei 
Russia had formally accepted the Vienna proposal, which 
the new boundary between Russia and Moldavia by a 
starting from a point north of the Pruth, and going south 
along a chain of hills to Lake Salyick ; that at Paris, c 
pure deference to the wishes of the Emperor of Russia 
from a desire to insist on nothing that had not a real pol 
value, the allies had agreed to a great modification of thii 
in favour of Russia; that the new line was, however, 
plainly and clearly described by the treaty ; that it is to 
from a point on the sea-coast beyond Lake Bourna Sola, tc 
up to the Ackerman Road, and to follow along that road to 


JuVer Yalpouk, leaving the town of Bolgrad to the north of 
the boundary ; that at the Congress a map had been produced, 
on which a town had been pointed out bearing the name of 
Tabor, or of Bolgrad, and which was designated as the town to 
the south of which the boundary line is to run, and between 
that town and Lake Yalpouk there is space enough for the 
Hoe to be drawn. But, I said, when the commissioners came 
to the ground, the Russians started a new Bolgrad on the 
allies ; and this new Bolgrad is much to the south of the Bolgrad 
of the Conference, and so close to Lake Yalpouk that there is 
bo space for a boundary line between the town and the lake. I 
add this was an unworthy deception which cannot be acquiesced 
in, and that the old Bolgrad, which was the town meant by the 
Congress, must be the Bolgrad to the south of which the 
boundary is to run. Count Chreptovitch said that in fact the 
new Bolgrad is the real town, the old Bolgrad being only a 
mined and deserted village ; but nevertheless he admitted that 
the old Bolgrad, and not the new one, must be deemed the 
Bolgrad of the treaty. 

I said that we had to complain of another proceeding of the 
Russian commissioners. That the commission had agreed to 
make a general survey of the whole line in the first instance, 
and then go over it regularly, putting up landmarks as they 
vent. That upon a great part of the line all are agreed ; and 
oar commissioners proposed that upon those parts the land- 
marks should be fixed, leaving the other parts, as to which 
differences had arisen, to be landmarked afterwards, when the 
disputed points should have been settled. That to this the 
Russians have objected, and want to delay the whole till the whole 
k agreed upon. I said that in this way the season for opera- 
tions will be lost ; winter will come on before the boundary is 
laid down ; and what will be the consequence ? The Russians 
▼ill not go out of the district to be ceded, because the boundary 
line is not settled and drawn ; the Austrians will not go out of 
the Principalities because the Russians are not out of ceded 
Bessarabia ; and our fleet may probably not leave the Black 
Sea because the treaty is not executed. All this state of things 
▼ill be contrary to the treaty; but the fault will be with 
fiossia, and with her also the responsibility ; and this we shall 
We to say when Parliament meets. Count Chreptovitch said 
that these delays were the fault of subordinate agents, and 
not of the Russian Government, who are anxious for a final set- 
tlement. I said that might be ; but we cannot give orders to 


these subordinate Russian agents, and the Russian 
ment can ; and as that Government is despotic, it can 
orders to be obeyed, and we must therefore hold the 
ment answerable for the conduct of its agents. However, 
Count assured me, in the most positive terms, that these 
tors shall be speedily and satisfactorily settled. I said I 
they would, and that thus all difficulties would be got 
That the information that Kars is immediately to be 
to the Turks, had relieved us from an embarrassment ire ! 
felt as to whether Lord Granville should be allowed to go 
Moscow ; and if those other points were well settled, we 
resume with Russia our former habits of cordial frfc 
That we are plain and simple people, and look to things i 
not to words ; and that the sort of small attentions and 
which we understand they are lavishing on the 
though with what success may be doubted — would be all 
thrown away upon us. That Prince GortschakofF seems 
have expressed to Lord Granville some surprise that 
should have taken singly, in the Black Sea, a step with 
ence to a treaty to which England is only one of several 
tracting parties ; but that Prince GortschakofF must not 
surprised if we continue to act in the same manner, whc 
any occasion for doing so should arise, inasmuch as we confflW 
that we have a right to do so, and we know that we have 4wj 
power to do so. 

I said that Baron Brunnow had often said to me that Bug-" 
land and Russia hold to different principles of government 
Russia is for despotic power ; England for constitutions; bit 
nevertheless the two countries have great interests in com- 
mon, upon which abstract and theoretical differences of opinion 
have no direct bearing ; and that, as long as Russia and Eng- 
land do not come into collision about the affairs of Turkey (f 
the affairs of Persia, there is no reason why they should not 
act in concert on many important matters. I said I hoped 
that Russia would stick to her engagements about Turkey, and 
then there could be no differences on that subject. That as to 
Persia, Russia had, during the war, done in Persia what aha 
had done in America, and what she had a perfect right to do, 
that is to say, create for England as much embarrassment and 
hostility as she could. That her instruments, however, had 
become, or will become, her victims. That Russia had lost fcr 
President Pierce all chance of re-election by the course d# 
urged him to take towards England ; and that as to Pers*> 


we have hitherto shown great forbearance, the time in 
approaching when the Persian Government will see cause 
it its conduct towards us, unless in the interval that 
shall be entirely changed, and fully atoned for. I 
red that Count Chreptovitch did not very much deny what 
as to the action of Russia in America and in Persia. I 
id he with great warmth of manner joined in the wish 
our sincere desire is to forget the recent past, and to 
iber only our former good relations. I said that, with regard 
>lf personally, it w unfortunate that so long a delay ha* 
place between his nomination and his arrival, l>ecauso it 
be considered otherwise than as a mark of want of re- 
to the Queen — not perhaps on his part, but on the part of 
[Government. That in general, when a foreign Minister 
while the Queen is at Osborne, such Minister is taken 
by the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, to have as 
as possible his audience of Her Majesty at Osl>orne ; but 
in his case this practice will not be observed ; and that, as 
shown so little empressenient to pay Ins respects to the 
fen, Her Majesty cannot be advised to show any empresse- 
M to receive him ; and that he cannot have his audience till 
bQueen shall return to London* 

kWe parted with much mutual cordiality, and tender in* 
fies about mutual friends, English and Russian. 


I France did not show herself so ready to support 
Iffland at the council table as she had proved herself 
the field. Lord Paimerston spoke frankly to the 
inch ambassador. He pointed out that owing to 
Inch assistance at the Congress, Russia had obtained 
HIT concessions to which she was not entitled : that, 
fine same, a Treaty had been concluded which was 
fflcient, if loyally carried out ; but that, on the con- 

3f 9 it was being evaded, and that the Russians pre- 
ed that they were secretly backed by Prance. He 
id that, as to these two points of Bolgrad and the Isle 
Serpents, it was absolutely impossible for England to 
Imit the pretensions of Eussia. That England had 
signed herself to accept somewhat unsatisfactory con- 
ttons of peace, sooner than be the cause of a continu- 
ice of the curse of war, but that she was quite resolved 


to insist on the full and entire execution of thoa« 
conditions, and that the only result of any failure o; 
French co-operation would be a weakening of the hon- 
ourable and advantageous alliance between France and 

Count Walewski's answer was of a nature to draw 
from Lord Palmerston a very decided hint that England 
would take her own line, whether France went back or 
forward, and his* firmness eventually carried the day. 

During the session a resolution was introduced in 
the House of Commons alleging that ' the conduct of 
Her Majesty's Government in the differences with the 
United States on the question of enlistment has not 
entitled them to the approbation of the House/ We 
had been charged with violating the neutrality of the 
United States, by enlisting recruits for the British ser- 
vice. No doubt the laws of the States had in some 
respects been infringed, but not intentionally, nor by 
any authorised English official. 1 However, Mr. Cramp- 
ton, our minister at Washington, received his pan- 
ports from the President and left the country. Our 
Government did not retaliate for this act of diplomatic 
censure, but continued to receive Mr. Dallas in Lon- 
don. Both their original offence and their subsequent 
apologetic conduct formed the grounds of Parliamen- 
tary attack on the Government. Lord Palmerston, 
when the resolution was discussed, successfully pointed 
out the inconsistencies of its supporters. While with 
one accord they joined in aspirations for peace and good- 
will between the two countries, they were doing all they 
could to create illwill. 

These gentlemen, so anxious for peace, tell you that England 
has been insulted, treated with contempt, contumely, and in- 
dignity. What is the effect likely to be produced? Why, to 
excite a spirit of resentment towards our neighbours and ko- 

1 Daring the Crimean war we sent a remonstrance to Holland <* 
her violation of neutrality in supplying arms to Russia, and then <&* 
covered that our own Ordnance Department had been ordering fw» 
the Dutch large quantities of gunpowder. 


dred in the United States. Others, again, tell the Americans 
that their Government has been deluded, and persuaded to 
accept an apology they ought not to have accepted, and that 
their laws have been intentionally violated by a foreign Govern- 
ment. Is that the way to create good feeling ? Is that the 
way to persuade the American people to cultivate the most 
friendly relations with England 1 

Thus he met his critics. 

Towards the end of the year Lord Palmerston visited 
Manchester and Liverpool, and received, amid much 
mthusiasm, addresses from the corporations and other 
rablic bodies. 

Any record of his life would be incomplete that did 
lot notice the death of his only brother, Sir William 
Temple, which occurred in London, in August of this 
rear. Although Lord Palmerston was the older by not 
nore than two years, he always treated his younger 
Jrother with the affectionate care which might rather 
96 expected from a father. Many of the most inter- 
esting of his letters are those to his brother, who, being 
in the diplomatic service, lived much abroad, and 
irhom Lord Palmerston therefore endeavoured, in spite 
)f all his work, to keep informed as to what was going 
ml at home. A strong affection subsisted between them, 
tffchough their temperaments were very different ; and 
bring William Temple's last illness in London, Lord 
Palmerston passed a considerable time with him every 

The future of Egypt must, for a long time to come, 
bye a special interest for Englishmen. The following 
letter to Lord Clarendon sufficiently explains itself, and 
8 interesting as showing the head of the British Cabinet 
leclining proposals coming from an unexpected quarter, 
rhich were to lead to the possession of Egypt by Eng- 
fcnd. Lord Palmerston's opinions on this matter were 
requently repeated. He saw the paramount importance 
fits being kept open for transit, but never encouraged 
By idea of annexation. On one occasion, to Lord 
Wley, he used a homely but apt illustration : ( We do 



not want Egypt/ he said, ' or wish it for ourselves up 
more than any rational man with an estate in the Bortk 
of England and a residence in the south, would have 
wished to possess the inns on tbe north road. All he 
could want would have been that the inns should be 
well kept, always accessible, and furnishing him, whea 
he came, with mutton chops and post-horses.' ' 

Piccadilly : March 1, 1857. 
My dear Clarendon, — As to the Emperor's schemes about 
Africa, the sooner Cowley sends in his grounds of objection As 
better. It is very possible that many parts of the world would 
be better governed by France, England, and Sardinia than 
they are now ; and we need not go beyond Italy, Sicily, and 
Spain for examples. But the alliance of England and France 
has derived its strength not merely from the military and na*al 
power of the two states, but from the force of the moral prifr 
ciple upon which that union has been founded. Our union hi 
for its foundation resistance to unjust aggression, the defence 
of the weak against the strong, and the maintenance of tbe 
existing balance of power. How, then, could we combine to 
become unprovoked aggressors, to imitate, in Africa, the par- 
tition of Poland by the conquest of Morocco for France, of 
Tunis and some other state for Sardinia, and of Egypt for 
England? and, more especially, how could England and France, 
wh ) have guaranteed the integrity of the Turkish Empire, turn 
round and wrest Egypt from the Sultan 1 A coalition for such 
a purpose would revolt the moral feelings of mankind, and 
would certainly be fatal to any English Government that was 
a party to it. Then, as to the balance of power to be main- 
tained by giving us Egypt. In the first place, we don't want 
to have Egypt. What we wish about Egypt is that it should 
continue attached to the Turkish empire, which is a security 
against its belonging to any European Power. We want to 
trade with Egypt, and to travel through Egypt, but we do not 
want the burthen of governing Egypt, and its possession would 
not, as a political, military, and naval question, be considered, 
in this countiy, as a set-off against the possession of Morocco 
by France. Let us try to improve all these- countries by the 
general influence of our commerce, but let us all abstain from 
a crusade of conquest which would call upon us the condemna- 
tion of all the other civilised nations. 

1 To Lord Cowley, November 25, 1859. 


oonquest of Morocco was the secret aim of Louis Phi- 
and is one of the plans deposited for use, as occasion may 
in the archives of the French Government. 

August the Emperor of the French, with the 
>ress, paid a visit to the Queen at Osborne. The 
it question to be discussed was that of the Danubian 
jipalities. Russia, France, and Sardinia were in 
of the union of Roumania with Moldavia; Prussia 
neutral ; England, Austria, and Turkey were op- 
to it. By the Treaty of Paris their future con- 
ition bad been left to be settled by the Treaty 
*rs after a Divan had been convoked in each of the 
provinces to ascertain the wishes of the people 
iselves. There was little doubt as to what they 
i, but the elections in Moldavia resulted in the 
of members unfavourable to the union. The 
being accused of having obtained this result by un- 
means, a demand was made for the annulling of the 
lotions under a threat of the withdrawal of the French 
id Russian ambassadors from Constantinople. This 
eant war and general confusion. Lord Palmerston's 
tendance was requested at Osborne in order to confer 
lout these matters, and a memorandum of the arrange- 
ent agreed upon was drawn up by him. It was in 
that the Moldavian elections should be annulled ; 
le the two Governments were to combine to secure 
ifi suzerainty of the Sultan over the Provinces. The 
)d of it all, however, was, as we know, their union 
ider one ruler, thereby affording another illustration of 
ft futility of attempting in these days to sever by arti- 
aal means countries which affinity, fellow-feeling, 
id geography combine to join. England gave herself 
ithis occasion much trouble and incurred some risk, 
ith the sole result of alienating from herself the sym- 
kfhies of the populations whose fate was involved, 
sance had taken an opposite line, though, no doubt, 
&m other motives than pure affection for the ftou- 
anians and Moldavians. 



Lord Palmerston's character must have been quite a 
puzzle to the French Emperor, who found that he could 
neither intimidate nor cajole him, nor yet shake him off. 
No wonder that he sometimes showed a little temper. 

' I am rather surprised,' says Lord Palmerston, 1 ( that the 
Emperor should have spoken with so much bitterness about 
me, for nothing could be more personally friendly than his 
manner at Osborne. But the fact, no doubt, is that he is 
much annoyed at finding that we did not give in to his notions 
about driving the Mahomedans away from the southern shores 
of the Mediterranean, and about giving an extension to French 
occupation in Africa. The fact is that, in our alliance with 
France, we are riding a runaway horse, and must always be on 
our guard ; but a runaway horse is best kept in by a light 
hand and an easy snaffle. It is fortunate for us that we are 
thus mounted, instead of being on foot, to be kicked at by this 
same steed ; and as our ally finds the alliance useful to himself, 
it will probably go on for a good time to come. The danger is, 
and always has been, that France and Russia should unite to 
carry into effect some great scheme of mutual ambition. Eng- 
land and Germany would then have to stand out against them; 
and Germany is too much broken up and disjointed to be an 
efficient ally. 

We had this year a little war with Persia, owing to 
her occupation of Herat, contrary to the solemn engage- 
ments made with England in 1853. Although the 
dispute did not attract much public attention, Lord 
Palmerston was fully alive to the importance of the 
issues involved. He foresaw that Khiva and Bokhara 
would shortly be occupied by Russia, and that Cabul 
and Candahar might, before very long, be deemed the 
advanced outposts of British India. Whether it would 
be better that Herat should remain a weak, independent 
Government, or that it should be in the hands of a ruler 
able to defend it, like the ruler of Cabul, and who, ty 
geographical position, must attach himself to an English 
alliance, might be a moot point ; but at any rate it was 
clear that it must not be allowed to fall to Persia* 
About the general question he says to Lord Clarendon:— 

1 To Lord Clarendon, September 29, 1867. 


February 17, 1857. 

It is quite true, as you say, that people in general are dis- 
posed to think lightly of our Persian war ; that is to say, not 
enough to see the importance of the question at issue. Ellen- 
borough is right : we are beginning to repel the first opening 
of trenches against India by Russia ; * and whatever difficulties 
Perokh a may make about Afghanistan, we may be sure that 
Russia is his prompter and secret backer. But that makes it 
the more essential that we should carry our point on that 
subject. "What, however, are our important points? The 
renunciation by Persia of all claim over Herat and of all 
future design or attempt to invade Herat. This is a sine qud 
non, and, of course, includes an acknowledgment of the inde- 
pendence of Herat, and includes it so completely that a dis- 
tinct acknowledgment of that independence seems hardly 
necessary. Any engagement on our part towards Persia about 
our own relations with Afghanistan should be peremptorily 

As to our mediation, as there is in most men's minds a 
confusion of ideas between mediation and arbitration, we might, 
if driven to it, substitute for mediation, a condition that if any 
difference should arise between Persia and any of the Affghan 
states, including Herat, Persia would, in the first place, ask our 
good offices to arrange the matter in dispute ; and we might 
promise to use our good offices to obtain a settlement just and 
honourable to both parties. 

• The treaty of peace between the Queen of England 
and ' His Majesty whose standard is the sun ' was signed 
at Faris on March 4. Persia renounced all claim or 
dominion over Herat and Affghanistan, and engaged (in 
such terms as were suggested in the above letter) to 
refer any future differences she might have with the 
Affghan states to the friendly offices of the British. 

The opportunity of this war was also taken to obtain 
the abolition of slave trade in the Persian Gulf — an 
act consistent with the many former efforts of Lord 
Palmerston to put an end to traffic in human beings. 

1 Lord Ellenborough had just made a speech in the House of Lords 
in this sense. 

* Ferokh Khan, ambassador from Persia. 


I append a letter which, on the conclusion of peace, 
he wrote to the Sadr Azim l in reply to a flowery com- 
munication from that minister. It is a specimen both 
of the skill with which he could read as well as write 
between the lines and of candid irony in expressing his 
sentiments. Behind the diplomatic effusion of the 
Persian minister he discerned the true character and 
motives of his correspondent, who had secretly been a 
bitter enemy of England. His courteous reply conveys 
very clearly that he knew it all, but that the ' least said, 
soonest mended ; only don't let it occur again ' : — 

London : September 8, 1857. 

Excellency, — I have received with much pleasure the letter 
dated June 5 last, which you were so good as to address to 
me ; and I have been much gratified by the friendly sentiments 
which it contains. I rejoice, as your Excellency does, at the 
treaty of peace, which has happily put an end to the war 
between England and Persia; and I hope that the peace which 
has thus been established may long continue for the mutual 
advantage of both countries. , I can truly assure your Excel- 
lency that it is the wish of the English Government and of the 
English nation that Persia should be a happy, a prosperous, a 
strong, and an independent state, and that the most perfect 
friendship and the fullest confidence should prevail between 
the Governments of England and of Persia. 

I am rejoiced to find, from your Excellency's letter, that it 
is your desire and intention to cultivate in future the friend- 
ship of England. But I should not be deserving of your good 
opinion if I were to disguise from you the truth of my thoughts, 
and there are parts of your Excellency's letter which compel 
me to speak frankly in reply. 

Your Excellency says that, until now, out of various con- 
siderations, you have looked upon yourself as alone and with- 
out assistance in your endeavours to preserve the friendship of 
the two Governments from injury. And you farther say that 
you request me, and you entertain the firm hope that I shall 
henceforward give my full attention to the observance of the 
rules of friendship and unity between the two Governments. 

Now upon this I feel myself obliged to say that the war 
which took place between our two countries was not owing to 

1 The 'Prime Minister' of Persia. 


any neglect on the part of the English Government of the 
roles of friendship and equity, but was occasioned solely and 
entirely by your Excellency's own unfriendly conduct, and by 
the violent hostility which your Excellency displayed towards 
England, both in word and deed ; and, therefore, so far from 
your Excellency having been alone in endeavours to preserve 
friendship between the two Governments, your Excellency 
fras the main and principal cause of the cessation of that 

I have no doubt that your Excellency, in seeking a quarrel 
vith England, believed that you were promoting the interests 
»f Persia, and I am bound to suppose that your Excellency 
onsidered yourself as performing on that occasion the part of 
true patriot ; and this belief on my part strengthens my con- 
dence in the future maintenance of friendship between the 
wo Governments and countries, because the events of the war, 
nd the decisive victories obtained by the British troops over 
aperior numbers of Persian troops, must have shown and have 
roved to the sagacious mind and powerful understanding of 
our Excellency that the true interests of Persia are best pro- 
ioted by peace and friendship with England, and that the sure 
esults to Persia of war with England must be defeat and 
isaster. With this conviction strongly impressed upon your 
imd, your Excellency will, I am sure, like a good patriot, 
learly see in what direction the welfare of your country lies, 
nd you will direct your policy as minister of your Sovereign 
o as to secure that welfare. Therefore it is that, knowing the 
igh statesmanlike qualities which so eminently distinguish 
our Excellency, I feel satisfied that the alliance between our 
wo countries will rest henceforward upon the basis of national 
nterest, which is a firmer foundation than the sentiments of 
ndividual ministers, however friendly and sincere those senti- 
ments may be. With every wish for the health and happiness 
*f your Excellency, and with a fervent hope that the reign of 
rour illustrious master and Sovereign the Shah of Persia may 
» long and prosperous, 

I have the honour to remain, 

Your Excellency's most obedient 
and faithful Servant, 

His Excellency The Sadr Azim, &c. 




' Her Majesty commands us to inform yon that acts of 
violence, insults to the British flag, and infraction of 
treaty rights committed by the local Chinese authori- 
ties at Canton, and a pertinacious refusal of redress, 
have rendered it necessary for Her Majesty's officers in 
China to have recourse to measures of force to obtain 
satisfaction.' So ran the Speech from the Throne at 
the opening of Parliament in February 1857. 

This was the affair of the lorcha ' Arrow,' destined 
to attain some celebrity. It happened thus. Under 
treaties with China, British vessels were to be subject 
to consular jurisdiction only. The ' Arrow,' having a 
British register, was boarded by Chinese from a war 
junk and the crew carried off, on a charge of piracy. 
Sir John Bo wring, Governor of Hong-Kong, demanded 
satisfaction from the Chinese Commissioner, Yeh, and, 
failing to obtain it, proceeded to use force with the fleet 
under Admiral Sir Michael Seymour. He also added 
to his former demands one for the admission of foreign- 
ers to the port and city of Canton under treaty engage- 
ments which had never been carried out. Yeh retaliated 
by proclamations offering rewards for the heads of the 

Such was the position of affairs when Mr. Cobden 
brought forward in the House of Commons a resolution 
to the effect that ' the papers laid on the table f aited to 
establish satisfactory grounds for the violent measures 


to.' In the House of Lords a similar motion, 
fht forward by Lord Derby, had been rejected by a 
>rity of thirty-six. The discussion in the Commons 
four nights, and was marked by great ability. 
Gladstone, Sir James Graham, Lord John Russell, 
Disraeli, and Mr. Roebuck all joined Mr. Cobden 
attack upon the Government. As the debate 
»ded it became evident that the fate of the Go- 
iment was involved. Meetings were held, on the 
hand by the Opposition, and on the other by the 
ids of the Government, at which resolutions to put 
all their respective strength were adopted. The 
»rial phalanx had been lately weakened, many 
having grown apathetic, owing to the coldness 
towards the cause of Reform. The issue was up 
last doubtful. Lord Palmerston spoke vigorously, 
concluded with some pointed strictures upon the 
ibination of parties confederated against him, warn- 
the House that it had in its keeping not only the 
ists and lives of many of their fellow-countrymen, 
ft also the honour and reputation of the country. The 
lolution was, however, carried against the Govern- 
jnt by a majority of sixteen. 

; * Let the noble Lord,' Mr. Disraeli had said in his 
tech, ' who complained that he was the victim of a 
pspiracy, not only complain to the country, but let 
to appeal to it.' Perhaps he little thought that he 
Bold be taken at his word. Anyhow, the next day 
A one, Lord Palmerston announced to the house that, 
•oonasthe necessary business could be completed, 
ttliament would be dissolved. He was at once asked 
bether meanwhile the war, which had been con- 
tained, was to be carried on, and whether the Go- 
vnor, who had been censured, was to be retained, 
lit Lord Palmerston was not a man to be awed by 

Sic into conclusions inconsistent with that policy 
ch he was about to ask the nation to ratify. His 
iswer to these challenges was that the policy of the 
Overnraent, so long as it continued a Government 



would remain what it had been. That policy was ' 
maintain the rights and defend the lives and pro] 
of British subjects ; to improve our relations with 
and in the selection and arrangement of the means 
the accomplishment of those objects to perform thedi 
which they owed to the country/ 

There never, perhaps, was a general election wl 
turned more completely than this one of 1857 on 
personal prestige of a minister and the national 
dence in one man. Lord Palmerston — after dec] 
overtures from the Oity of London and other p] 
put forth his address to the country through the ele 
of Tiverton, the Devonshire borough to which he 
wedded, both by ties of gratitude and of inclinat 
In it he distinctly challenged the verdict of the 
stituencies as one of confidence or* no confidence in 
administration. But in a very short time there was*] 
doubt as to what the answer would be. Personally, " 
was in the heyday of his popularity. The cot 
remembered that when others had shrunk from W 
responsibility of conducting the war with Bussia* to 
had come forward and carried it to a successful issue it 
the face of great difficulties at home, in the field, and 
at the congress table. It appreciated his talent and 
versatility. It admired his good-humour and galW 
bearing in the face of opposition, and was proud of W 
marvellous energy and boisterous fun in despite of 
advancing years. The news of a happy conclusion to 
the Persian war came in time to aid his support* 
' Palmerston ! ' became a rallying cry on every hustings* 
The ' fortuitous concourse of atoms/ as he apologetics^ 
termed his opponents when they denied having comb** 
against him, was scattered to the winds. Many of tto 
leading Peelites lost their seats. Mr. Bright and #• 
Milner Gibson were displaced at Manchester, l&j 
Layard at Aylesbury, and Cobden himself was KJ^ 
at Huddersfield. The Opposition was discomfited, tfj 
a triumphant majority was returned to support Itf* 
Palmerston's Government. 


The new Parliament met on the 80th of April ; and 
almost immediately after the commencement of business 
lord Palmerston moved the Army Estimates, Sir John 
Bamsden, the Under-Secretary for War, not having had 
time to make himself acquainted with the details of 
Mb office. This short session was naturally not very 
productive of legislation. The silence of the Queen's 
Speech on the subject of Parliamentary Reform had 
been strongly commented upon in the discussion on the 
Address. The murmurers had been quieted by Lord 
Palmerston's assurance that before next year it would 
be the duly of the Government to take the subject into 
their fullest consideration, but that they felt no useful 
purpose could be" served by calling upon the House 
during so brief a session to enter upon so large and 
sweeping a question: One of the principal measures 
carried was the Divorce Court Bill, which encountered 
pertinacious opposition. Lord Palmerston met the 
charge of hurrying the Bill through Parliament by a 
laughing rejoinder that, on the contrary, he was quite 
ready to sit through September if it was desired to 
kve a full discussion of all the details, and added, 
amid laughter and cheers, ' One prominent opponent of 
the Bill said to me on one occasion, " You never shall 
fma the Bill." I replied, " Won't w&? " ' The ques- 
tion had indeed occupied the attention of the Legislature 
for so many years, that it seemed likely to do so for 
Oany years longer. It was only the firmness and de- 
ermination of the Premier that carried it to a settle- 

Lord Palmerston varied his labours during the 
Bgsion by a visit to Manchester, for the opening of the 
^ine Art Exhibition, and by interviews at Osborne with 
be Emperor of the French and the Grand Duke Con- 
tantine, who both visited England this summer. He 
Tailed himself of his conversation with the latter to 
Bll him. that the English Government could not con- 
&nt to the proposal which had been made to them 
j the Russian Government, namely, to limit British 


consuls to the southern districts of Persia, and to leave 
the Russian consuls in undisturbed possession of the 

About the middle of June the news of the Indian 
mutiny burst upon the Government. Troops were at 
once ordered to prepare for embarkation. The next 
mail brought tidings of the death of General Anson, the 
Commander-in-Chief. The news arrived on a Satur- 
day. That same night Lord Palmerston had an inter- 
view with Sir Colin Campbell, who started on the 
Sunday, to take the command in India. 

Vigorous as were the efforts of the Government to 
meet the crisis, they did not completely satisfy the very 
natural anxiety of their Sovereign. The Queen had 
expressed her views to this effect in a letter to Lord 
Palmerston, which drew from him the following charac- 
teristic answer: — 

Piccadilly : 18th July, 1857. 

Viscount Palmerston presents his humble duty to your 
Majesty, and has had the honour to receive your Majesty's com- 
munication of yesterday, stating what your Majesty would have 
said if your Majesty had been in the House of Commons. 

Viscount Palmerston may perhaps be permitted to take the 
liberty of saying that it is fortunate for those from whose 
opinions your Majesty differs that your Majesty is not in fete 
House of Commons, for they would have had to encounter I 
formidable antagonist in argument; although, on the other 
hand, those whose opinions your Majesty approves would have 
had the support of a powerful ally in debate. 

But with regard to the arrangements in connection with the ' 
state of affairs in India, Viscount Palmersjbon can assure your ^ 
Majesty that the Government are taking, and will not foil to 
continue to take, every measure which may appear well adapted 
to the emergency ; but measures are sometimes best calculated 
to succeed which follow each other step by step. 


This drew another and a more detailed communica- 
tion from the Queen, in which the military measures to 
be adopted were urged at greater length. The Cabinet 
were not backward in seconding the wishes of the 
Crown, and, * step by step,' but without any loss at 


, a succouring and avenging army was dispatched 
8 the sea. The first vessel had sailed from our shores 
troops on the 1st of July, and she was followed by 
■s in continuous succession, so that by the end of 
jmber about eighty ships had left for India, with 
jrds of 30,000 troops on board. This rapidity and 
ir was but the fitting counterpart to the heroic 
a of our fellow-countrymen in the East, who pre- 
d for us our empire in Hindostan. Lord Palmer- 
at the Lord Mayor's banquet on the 9th of 
;mber, paid a tribute to the national spirit. 

is impossible for any Englishman to allude to that which 
>een achieved in India — not by soldiers only, but by 
us, by individuals, and by knots of men scattered over the 

surface of a great empire — without feeling prouder than 
>f the nation to which we have the happiness to belong. 

never was an instance in the history of the world of such 
lid examples of bravery, of intrepidity, of resource, and 
tliance accomplishing such results as those which we 
lately witnessed. The Government at home, on the other 
may justly pride themselves on not having been unequal 

magnitude of the occasion. We took the earliest oppor- 
r of despatching to India a great army — an army which 
iot yet arrived when those great victories were accom- 
d, but which, when it shall arrive, will render that which 
as to be done comparatively easy of accomplishment, and 
[ cannot entertain the slightest doubt, re-establish the 
• and authority of England upon an unshakable basis 
*hout the whole of our Indian empire. My noble friend 
Panmure has alluded to the spirit which has been dis- 
1 in this country, and I am proud to say, that although 
,ve despatched from these shores the largest army that I 
e ever at one time left them, we have now under arms 
» United Kingdom as many fighting men as we had before 
ews of the mutiny reached us; and, therefore, if any 
n nation ever dreamed in its visions that the exertions 
. we had been compelled to make in India had lessened 
rength at home, and that the time had arrived when a 
ait bearing might be exhibited towards us from that 
. was safe in the moment of our strength, the manner in 

the spirit of the country has burst forth, the manner in 
L our ranks have been filled, the manner in which our 


whole force has been replenished, will teach the world t 
would not be a safe game to play to attempt to take adn 
of that which was erroneously imagined to be the mam 
our weakness. It has been the fashion among the pec 
the Continent to say that the English nation is not a m 
nation. In one sense, indeed — in their sense — that an 
may be said to be true. An Englishman is not so fond 
people of some other countries are of uniforms, of steel seal 
and of iron heels ; but no nation can excel the English, 
as officers or soldiers, in a knowledge of the duties of tb 
tary profession, and in the zeal and ability with which 
duties are performed ; and wherever desperate deeds an 
accomplished — wherever superior numbers are to be 
encountered and triumphantly overcome — wherever prii 
are to be encountered — wherever that which a soldier 
confront is individually or collectively to be faced, there, 
venture to say, there is no nation on the face of the globe 
can surpass — I might, without too much national vanity, 
believe that there is no nation which can equal — the pe 
the British islands. But, my Lord Mayor and gent 
while we all admire the bravery, the constancy, and th< 
pidity of our countrymen in India, we must not forget 
justice also to our countrywomen. In the ordinary co 
life the functions of woman are to cheer the days of axh 
to soothe the hours of suffering, and to give additional bri 
to the sunshine of prosperity ; but our countrywomen ii 
have had occasion to show qualities of a higher and nobl< 
and when they have had either to sustain the perils of th 
to endure the privations of a difficult escape, to forget th 
sufferings in endeavouring to minister to the wants of 
the women of the United Kingdom have, wherever the 
been found in India, displayed qualities of the nobles 
such as never have been surpassed in the history of the 
Henceforth the bravest soldier may think it no dispara, 
to be told that his courage and his power of endurance ar 
to those of an Englishwoman. 

In Lord Palmerston's pocket-book I find i 
about this speech : ' Gave much offence at Compi£ 
can't be helped — il n'y a que la verite qui blesse.' 
allusion to the f foreign nation which might dreat 
we had lessened our strength at home ' had bee 
propriated by the French Court, which was jusl 


showing, in concert with certain noisy bodies in France, 
considerable umbrage at the protection England afforded 
to foreign refugees, although Lord Palmerston, writing 
to Lord Clarendon, says, ' My speech was pointed, not 
st France particularly, but at the whole Continent, 
where, for the last six months, we have been talked of, 
tad written of, and printed of as a second-rate power. 
I hear that at Paris, since the fall of Delhi, no French- 
man in the clubs ever mentions India. 9 1 

The fact was, that not only our Indian empire, but 
oar place among nations was at stake during this crisis. 
So sensible of this was Lord Palmerston that he steadily 
feclined pressing offers of foreign assistance which 
irere made to the British Government, feeling that, 
torn the tone adopted abroad, it became necessary that 
ingland should triumph entirely ' off her own bat,' as 
le jauntily expressed it. Not only did Prussian officers 
adividually volunteer their services, but an offer was 
lade of two Belgian regiments to be taken bodily into 
ur pay. The object in either case was, no doubt, the 
xperience to be gained by active operations in the 
ield on a large scale, rather than any quixotic devotion 
o the English cause. But, whatever the motives, Lord 
'almerston steadily set his face against the proposals, 
Ithough some in places of authority appeared inclined 
o favour the idea of a Belgian contingent. c The more 
'. think of it,' ^ e wrote to Lord Clarendon on Sep- 
ember 29, 'the more I feel it is necessary for our 
standing and reputation in the world that we should 
>ut down this mutiny and restore order by our own 
means, and I am perfectly certain that we can do it 
ind that we shall do it. 9 

Parliament was called together for the next session 
:>n December 4, to pass a Bill of Indemnity for the 
Government for having suspended the Bank Charter 
&.ct during the financial panic of the autumn. Lord 
Palmerston has a pithy note about the debate : i Geo. 

1 To Lord Clarendon, November 16, 1857. 


Lewis and J. Russell made good speeches. The others, 
not having a clear idea, conveyed none.' The two 
Houses adjourned for Christmas, and met again at the 
usual time in February. On the first evening the Pre- 
mier moved an address of congratulation to the Queen 
on the marriage of the Princess Royal and the Crown 
Prince of Prussia, stating that there had been no event 
since the marriage of her Majesty herself which had 
so much enlisted the feelings and so much excited the 
interest of the whole British nation. With his usual 
instinct as to what would be most pleasing to the people 
of England, he put into the foreground that this was 
not a marriage of mere political convenience, but one 
of mutual affection. The illustrious parties chiefly 
concerned, he added, ' have been more fortunate than 
many royal personages. They, indeed, have belonged 
to that class whom it is said — 

" Gentle stars unite, and in one fate 

Their hearts, their fortunes, and their feelings blend."' 

A few days later he introduced the Government Bill 
which was to transfer the rule over India from the old 
Company to the Crown, it having been shown by the 
events of the past year that, to use his own words to 
the Queen, the inconvenience and difficulty of adminis- 
tering the government of a vast country on the other 
side of the globe by means of two Cabinets, the one 
responsible to the Crown and Parliament, the other 
only responsible to the holders of India Stock, meeting, 
for a few hours, three or four times a year, was no 
longer tolerable. Many vested interests were involved, 
and, under a plea of delay, a strong opposition was 
offered ; but on a division the Ministry, contrary to 
general expectation, obtained the large majority of 
145. 1 Walking home with Lord Palmerston after this 

1 The majority was even greater than had been expected, and proves 
how little credit is to be given to reports which circulate in cluba iind 
drawing-rooms as to the probable result of Parliamentary proceedings' 
(Lord Palmerston to the Queen, Feb. 18, 1858.) 


ras result, Sir Richard Bethell, then Attorney- 
1, remarked to him that he ought, like the 
tn consuls in a triumph, to have somebody to re- 
turn that he was, as a minister, mortal. 
?hat day week showed that no such reminder was 
But we must go back to recall the cireum- 
which had prepared the ground for the cata- 
ie which was now imminent. 
January 14 a most determined attempt had been 
to assassinate the Emperor Napoleon as he was 
driven with the Empress to the Opera. Bombs 
been thrown under his carriage, shattering the 
rork when they exploded and killing some twenty 
Lders. Fortunately, the Imperial party escaped 
only trifling injuries. The gang who had perpe- 
~ this outrage, of whom the leader was one Orsini, 
come from London, where they had made their 

E ^rations for this atrocious attempt. Much indig- 
n was felt by the French that men should be able 
iftontrive such a diabolical deed under the protection 
^English hospitality. It was felt to be unjust that 
liter should be afforded by a Government — and still 

£i by a friendly Government — to the assassins of a 
dly Sovereign. This very natural feeling found 
■reasion in a despatch from the Minister of Foreign 
purs at Paris to Count Persigny, the French ambas- 
ior in London. Count Walewski, after deprecating 
y intention to find fault with the right of asylum 
bioh England extended to political refugees, pointed 
it that men such as Pianori and Orsini were not mere 
jitives, but were assassins : — 

Ought the English legislation, he proceeded, to contribute 
then 1 designs and continue to shelter persons who place 
emselves beyond the pale of common right and under the ban 
humanity 1 Her Britannic Majesty's Government can assist 
in averting a repetition of such guilty enterprises by affording 
a guarantee of security which no state can refuse to a neigh- 
oring state, and which we are authorised to expect from an 
ty. Fully relying, moreover, on the high sense of the English 

vol. ix. A A 


Cabinet, we refrain from indicating in any way the measures 
which it may see fit to take in order to comply with this wish. 
We rest entirely upon- it for estimating the decisions which it 
shall deem best calculated to attain the object. 

There was little in this document to arouse the sus- 
ceptibilities of the nation; and the Cabinet, sensible of 
the justice of some of the observations contained in it, 
determined, without answering it officially, to introduce 
a measure the effect of which would be to make the 
crime of conspiracy to murder — which had hitherto 
been treated as a misdemeanour — a felony, punishable 
with penal servitude. Lord Palmerston's first idea was 
a measure to give power to the Secretary of State to 
send away any foreigner whom the Government might 
have good reason to suspect was plotting a scheme 
against the life of a foreign sovereign, the Government 
being bound to state the grounds upon which the per- 
son in question had been sent away, either to a secret 
committee of Parliament or to a committee composed 
of the three chiefs of the courts of law. This notion, 
however, was abandoned for the simpler form of BiD 
which would, it was believed, attain the object in view. 
The Bill, although strongly opposed, was read a first 
time by a majority of no less than 200. Meantime, 
however, events were occurring which rapidly altered 
the public tone. Addresses had been presented to the 
Emperor from members of the French army, which, 
while congratulating him on his escape, contained ex- 
pressions and menaces but too well calculated to wound 
the pride and inflame the temper of the English people* 
Some of these i French colonels ' — as they were popu- 
larly designated — spoke of the English as c protectors 
of assassins,' and uttered threats to the effect that 'the 
infamous haunt in which such infernal machinatioDS 
were planned should be destroyed for ever.' 

These ridiculous effusions would have passed n* 
noticed, unless with contempt, had not some of them, 
unfortunately, been inserted in the * Moniteur/ ti* 
official organ of the French Government. In vain did 


the ambassador, by order of his Government, express 
regret at their insertion and explain that it happened 
through inadvertence, owing to the number of addresses 
which, according to the usual custom, required such 
official notification ; in vain did Lord Palmerston urge 
in the House that it would be unworthy of the nation 
to be turned from a course, otherwise proper, by the 
idle vapourings of irresponsible swashbucklers, and 
'upon any paltry feelings of offended dignity or of irri- 
tation at the expressions of three or four colonels of 
French regiments, to act the childish part of refusing 
m important measure on grounds so insignificant and 
irampery.' The nation's back was up. The House re- 
)ented of its former vote, and the leader of the Opposi- 
ion, who had spoken for the Bill on its first reading, 
oined with the other malcontents in giving it its death- 
blow, by supporting Mr. Milner Gibson's amendment to 
he question that it should be read a second time. This 
.mendment was : ' That this House cannot but regret 
hat Her Majesty's Government, previously to inviting 
he House to amend the law of conspiracy at the pre- 
ent time, have not felt it to be their duty to reply to 
he important despatch received from the French Govern- 
ment, dated January 20/ 

Verbal answers, fitting both in substance and in 
one, had been given to the French ambassador in Lon- 
lon and, through Lord Cowley, to the French Cabinet 
it Paris; but an official despatch, in reply, had been 
leliberately postponed, under the conviction that in the 
ictual temper of men's minds, no advantage, but only 
exasperation, would be the result of any answer which 
ike English Foreign Office could consistently give. 

Beport said that Lord Derby, sitting under the gal- 
lery of the House of Commons and watching the progress 
of the debate, saw the turn of the tide with the quick 
eye of an old parliamentary tactician, and sent hasty 
word to his lieutenants that they should take it at the 
flood which led to office. Anyhow, Mr. Disraeli plunged 
into the stream, and, declaring that while, on the first 

a a 2 


reading, the question was between England and Franc, 
on this the second reading, by some strange metamo 
phosis, it had become one between the House of Con 
mons and the English minister, he announced that I 
sided with the House. Mr. Gladstone also threw in h 
lot with the Opposition in a powerful speech; Loi 
John Russell joined the Radicals ; and when a divisic 
was called, Lord Palinerston's Government found itse 
in a minority of nineteen. 

This defeat was a complete surprise. Ministers 
when they went down to the House of Commons on tin 
afternoon of this February 19, did not even anticipate a 
narrow division, much less a crisis. There were unseen 
causes, however, which had been gradually sapping 
Lord Palmerston's ascendency over the House of Com- 
mons. Some injudicious appointments had alienated 
not a few of his supporters, and his manner lately had 
certainly, for some reason or other, become more brusque 
and dictatorial than was altogether pleasing to the 
members. Many, however, of those who voted in the 
majority did not wish to overthrow his Government, 
and had he thought fit to appeal to the House of Com- 
mons for a vote ot confidence, it would probably have 
accorded it, and have remained satisfied with the reply 
already given by the public to the denunciations of the 
French army. But Lord Palmerston never showed any 
undue tenacity in the retention of office. He at once 
tendered his resignation to the Queen, and persisted, 
although Her Majesty at first declined to accept it 

Thus Lord Palmerston, after weathering many * 
turbulent storm, was overthrown by a gust, and lirf 
Derby, being sent for, reigned bx his stead. The new 
Premier, with a candour which was very characteristic 
of him, soon acknowledged the hasty and needless 
character of the vote which had proved fetal to bis 
opponents, and to which he had so greatly contributed. 
In the House of Lords, on March 1, Lord Clarendon, 
who had been the Foreign Secretary of the late Govern- 
ment, fully vindicated their conduct ; and Lord Derty, 


in reporting to the Queen the proceedings of the evening, 
said, ' Lord Clarendon made an admirable speech in ex- 
planation of the course which the late Government 
pursued, and which, had it been delivered in the House 
of Commons on the subject of the amendment, would 
probably have deprived Lord Derby of the honour of 
addressing your Majesty on the present occasion. 9 l 

1 Martin's Life of the Prince Consort, vol. iv. p. 190. 




Just before his resignation, Lord Palmerston had the 
satisfaction of being able to announce the capture of 
Canton and the successful issue of his China policy. 
He was thus quite content to retire for awhile from the 
cares of office, convinced that the conduct of his Go- 
vernment in the matter of the attempt upon the French 
Emperor's life, though it involved him personally in * 
temporary banishment from power, had contributed to 
the preservation of that French alliance which it was 
one of his chief aims to maintain. Indeed, even after 
he had ceased to be responsible for the course of 
events, he still exerted his undoubted influence to 
smooth the path of his successors and to save them 
and the country from the consequences of a rupture 
with France. He writes, on March 1, to Lord Claren- 
don: — 

I am told that Persigny says that if the Derby Government 
drop the Murder Bill he will be immediately recalled. It would 
be most unfortunate that the diplomatic relations of the two 
countries should be broken off on such a ground. Such a rap- 
ture would justly incense the British nation, would make an? 
measure in the matter impossible, and would leave hardly an? 
way for a reconciliation. 

It would be very desirable that you should convey, if jw 
can, these considerations to Cowley, in order that he might, in 
case of need, press them upon the Emperor, and urge upon him 
strongly that his own persona] interest as well as that of both 


untries would be very seriously injured by such a step as the 
call of his ambassador. 

m We find him availing himself of his comparative 
isure to serve on a committee about the pollution of 
ie Thames, to preside at the Boyal Literary Fund 
inner, to see Barey, the horse-tamer, perform on a 
Lare called Surplice at the Duke of Wellington's 
•iding-school, and to make notes afterwards about his 
pstem of breaking and the pedigree of the animal, 
uch variety of employment must have been to him 
oth new and refreshing. 

In November he went over to Compiegne on a visit 
the Emperor Napoleon, and with both horse and 
nn joined in the sports of the French Court, though, 
n the hunting days, a stag, and not a fox, was the 
narry. He wrote to his brother-in-law: 'They are 
11 very civil and courteous, and the visits of the 
inglish to the Emperor serve as links to maintain and 
trengthen English alliance.' I find a scrap of con- 
ersation recorded which is amusing, as iUnstrating an 
(Id bent of the French mind. While the dancing was 
oing on, Lord Palmerston and the Emperor walked 
p and down an inner room, and the Imperial philo- 
>pher propounded his idea of an improvement upon 
ie existing system of universal suffrage, namely, to 
mit the right of voting to married men. He said 
iat unmarried men do not feel the same sentiments 
bout their country as those who have a family stake 
i it, and that such a voting qualification would shut 
at both priests and soldiers — classes which he would 
ish to see excluded. Lord Palmerston could only 
oswer that property of some sort ought, in his opinion, 
> be the real basis for the suffrage, and that while 
lany bachelors might own property, many a man 
ith both wife and child might have none. 1 

1 During this conversation the Emperor also said that the Emperor 
- Eussia had told him that he would spend his last rouble, and 
trainee his last man, to prevent the establishment of a Greek empire 
i Constantinople. 


Lord Derby's ministry meanwhile was conducting 
affairs in the face of a majority which did not show 
much inclination to tolerate them for long. After ful- 
filling the object of their call to power, namely, writing 
an answer of some sort to Count Walewski's despatch 
about the refugees, they had proceeded to bring in 
and immediately to withdraw their India Bill, and 
then to pass a different Bill, founded upon resolutions 
of the House. They managed, however, to struggle 
through the session by the aid of the self-sacrifice of 
one of their colleagues ! and of the gladiatorial genius 
of their Chancellor of the Exchequer. 

At the beginning of the session of 1859 a Reform 
Bill was introduced by the Government, one new 
feature of which was a franchise founded upon per- 
sonal property. On the second reading, Lord John 
Russell moved an amendment condemnatory of its 
provisions, and Lord Palmerston spoke in support of 
Lord John's resolution ; he chaffed the Ministry by 
assuring them that he did not want them to resign, 
but said to them, ' As Voltaire said of some minister 
who had incurred his displeasure, " I won't punish 
him ; I won't send him to prison ; I condemn him to 
keep his place." ' On a division in the House of 621 
members, the Government were left in a minority of 
39, and a few days later they announced their inten- 
tion of dissolving Parliament. 

Lord Palmerston was re-elected for Tiverton without 
opposition. Of course he had his usual tournament 
with the Radical butcher after he had finished his 
speech. In vain did Rowcliffe, from the middle of the 
crowd in front of the hustings, insist on a plain, 
straightforward answer to the questions he was about 
to put. He got what he asked for, but was left as 
much in the dark as ever. Yet it was all done so good- 
humouredly and with such an evident enjoyment of the 

1 Lord Ellenborough resigned in consequence of an attack on the 
Government about the publication of his despatch censuring the 
Governor-General of India, Lord Canning. 


the thing, that the most exacting elector could 
:e it amiss. 

r. Itowcliffe said that as Lord Palmerston had talked a 
'deal about Lord Derby's Reform Bill, he hoped his lord- 
raid favour the electors and non-electors with his views- 
>rm. He would ask his lordship whether he would vote 
ballot, and whether he was in favour of manhood 
>, or 61. franchise, or rating franchise. He was once a 
of the noble lord's committee, but finding his opinions, 
of his lordship's, he refused to remain a member any 
The noble lord also said a great deal about the Con- 
Bill, but it was well known he was a pet of the Emperor 
French. (Laughter.) He believed that the noble lord 
downright Tory, and the best representative the Conserva- 
oould possibly have. He hoped his lordship would answer 
ions in a straightforward and honest manner. 
Palmerston said he was delighted to find that his old 
however far advanced in years, retained that youthful 
which he possessed when first he knew him, and with 
>ur he had retained also his prejudices and opinions, 
iter, and a cry of * No chaff.') His friend asked for a 
Ltforward answer, and he would give him one. He totally 
with him in almost all his opinions. He (the noble 
thought the day would never come when he and his friend 
agree in political faith. His friend asked him what he 
it on many points. In the first place he would say he 
I opposed to the ballot. He was against manhood suffrage. 
tfnrcliffe : * How far will you go with the franchise 1 ') He 
old give a straightforward answer to that. He would not 
I him. (Laughter.) He held it was his duty, after the con- 
Bioe they had reposed in him, to act according to his judg- 
fit in any measure relating to Reform. He hoped that the 
Btical difference of Mr. Bowcliffe and himself would not alter 
ir private friendship. He was sorry to disagree with his 
and, but no man could agree with everybody. The man who 
I agree with everybody was not worth having anybody to 
pee with him. (Cheers and laughter.) 

The elections were much influenced by the aspect 

foreign affairs. On New Tear's Day the French 

nperor had electrified Europe by addressing the 

astrian ambassador, at the usual reception of the 


•diplomatic corps, in a manner which betokened an un- 
pleasant feeling between the two countries. Whether 
in so doing he was imitating his uncle, whose abrupt 
remark to the English minister at Paris in 1803 im- 
mediately preceded the rupture of the peace of Amiens, 
was a matter for curious speculation ; but the parallel 
did not fail to excite general uneasiness. The relations 
between Austria and Sardinia were known to be 
strained, owing to the impatience of the Italians at 
the continuance of Austrian predominance in the 
peninsula. Did these few words spoken at the 
Tuileries import that France would join in the fray 
should hostilities break out P This proved to be their 
meaning, and, after a few months of suspense, Austria 
fired the mine by a summons to Sardinia to disarm. 
On her refusal war was declared, and French troops 
began to pour into North Italy, as allies of Victor 
Emmanuel. This was the moment of the general 
election in England. Lord Derby's Government were, 
rightly or wrongly, suspected of leanings towards 
Austria, while public feeling was strongly in favour of 
Italian independence. This sufficed to turn the scale 
wherever parties were evenly balanced, and so the 
dissolution failed to give the Conservative party a 

A renewed attempt was made to induce Lord Pal- 
merston to join the Government with the leadership 
of the House of Commons, but the Liberal party had 
meanwhile been engaged in preparing for the ftiture 
by healing their dissensions and reconciling their 
leaders. Lord Palmerston and Lord John Russell had 
come to an agreement that whichever of the two was 
charged with the formation of a Government should 
receive the co-operation of the other. And at a 
meeting in Willis's Booms, at which some of the 
Peelites were present, it was arranged that an im- 
mediate vote of want of confidence in ministers should 
be moved by Lord Hartington in the House of Com- 
mons. Accordingly, on June 10, in a House of no left 


>7 members, such, a vote was carried by a ma- 
of 13, in spite of Mr. Disraeli's amusing protest 
the scene of Almack's, where dowagers and 
formerly held sway, having been turned into 
for the issuing of vouchers by political patrons. 
Granville, to the astonishment of everybody, 
rged with the construction of a Ministry, the 
feeling that ' to make so marked a distinction 
implied in the choice of one or other as Prime 
of two statesmen so full of years and honours 
Palmerston and Lord John Russell, would 
invidious and unwelcome task.' Lord Gran- 
failure to make a Government under the cir- 
ices is worth noting, as an illustration of the 
of our form of government, and of the 
tat the House of Commons is the ultimate de- 
of the power that makes, as well as unmakes, 

>rd Palmerston consented to serve under Lord 
Le for the reasons and under the limitations 
in the following paper :— 

j 94 Piccadilly: June 11, 1859. 

fiscount Palmerston presents his humble duty to Your 
0sty, and has the honour of assuring Your Majesty that he 

deem it his duty to afford Lord Granville his assistance 
jOO-operation in forming an administration in obedience to 
fc Majesty's commands. Viscount Palmerston considered 
jfelf to be promoting the public interest by taking an active 
fin the late proceedings in the House of Commons tending 
he removal of .Lord Derby's administration; but he feels 
rit would have been inexcusable in him to have encouraged 

organised those proceedings with a view to any personal 
Its or interests of his own. Those who unite to turn out 
p ointing Government ought to be prepared to unite to form 
conger Government than that which is to be overthrown ; 
it was in this spirit, and with a deep sense of what is due 
nblic men to Your Majesty and to the country, that Viscount 
nerston and Lord John Bussell, before they called the meet- 
it Willis's Rooms, came to an agreement to co-operate with 
I other in the formation of a new administration, whichever 


of the two might be called upon by Your Majesty to reconstruct 
Your Majesty's Government. That agreement did not extend 
to the case of any third person; but Viscount Palmerstaa 
conceives that the same sense of public duty which had led him 
to enter into that engagement with Lord John Russell, should 
also lead him to give assistance to Lord Granville towards the 
execution of Your Majesty's commands. Viscount Palmerston'i 
promise to Lord Granville has, however, been conditional. He 
thinks that it would be a great disappointment and an evil for 
the country if, on the overthrow of one administration by a 
deliberate vote of want of confidence by a recently elected Home 
of Commons, the overthrowing majority should be so paralysed 
as not to be able to offer to Your Majesty a stronger admini* 
tration than that which they have overthrown. But, on the 
other hand, it would be injurious to the interest of the Crown 
and of the nation, that on such an occasion an administration 
should be formed which, by the weakness of its personal de- 
ments, should be destitute of the inherent strength necessary to 
enable it to face and overcome the difficulties with which it \ 
must have to contend ; and Viscount Palmerston deems himself i 
bound by his duty to Your Majesty, and by a proper regard to 
what he owes to himself, to say that to an administration id t 
composed he would feel it impossible to belong. The promise, j 
therefore, which he has given to Lord Granville has been made j 
conditional on Lord Granville's success in organising a Govern- 
ment so composed as to be calculated officially to carry on the 
public service, and to command the confidence of Parliament 
and of the country. J 

This success did not attend Lord Granville's efforts. 
He found Lord John Bussell reluctant to accept hi» 
leadership, with Lord Palmerston leading the House of 
Commons ; and as he met with insuperable difficulties 
in the task which he had unwillingly undertaken, be 
resigned his commission. Lord Palmerston having i 
then been sent for, constructed a Ministry, with Lord ; 
John Bussell at the Foreign Office, and Mr. Gladstone 
at the Exchequer. He also offered the Board of Trade 
to Mr. Cobden, who declined it. The Administratiofl 
was looked upon as the strongest that was ever formed 
so far as the individual talents of its members were 
concerned. Men of some political mark were appointed. 


to the most subordinate offices. Thus Lord Pal- 
l, in his seventy-fifth year, again became Prime 
sr and leader of the House of Commons. The 
Lder of his course was to be comparatively smooth, 
years he was accepted by the country as the 
of the nation, and almost occupied a position 
red from the chances of party strife. Whatever 
Ities he had to contend with did not consist either 
abroad or in parliamentary defeats at home, 
as they may have been, they were of a more hidden 
>r. The events of this period are too recent to 
it either great detail in their history, or absence 
lerve on the part of the historian, 
le war in North Italy was sharp and short. The 
•ies of Magenta and Solferino drove the Austrians 
their famous Quadrilateral, and the last week in 
found the French and Sardinians pausing in view 
»se formidable defences. The Emperor Napoleon 
previously learnt that Prussia was preparing to 
the field and to march on Paris. He had lost 
ly men, and was anxious to make peace ; and so it 
med that, within a fortnight after accession to 
>, Lord Palmerston had to consider a proposal made 
Le British Cabinet that they should intervene be- 
een the belligerents, and propose an armistice upon 
ans which were laid before them by the French am- 
psador. These included the surrender of Lombardy 
ft the Duchies to Sardinia, and the erection of Ye- 
Ua into an independent state under an Archduke, 
fcmade no provision for the Papal States. In the 
lowing letter he gives his reasons for declining to 
ice England in such a false position : — 

Piccadilly : July 6, 1859. 

My dear John Russell, — The more I think of Persigny's 
Oposal the less I like it, and the more I incline to the opinion 
fcb we ought to be very careful not to involve ourselves, and 
t to commit ourselves by hastily adopting it. Those who 
Opose to two belligerents on the point of fighting that they 
(mid agree to an armistice, in order to negotiate a peace, 


ought to have settled in their own minds the outline of sodki 
arrangement as might be proposed to the belligerents 
chance of success ; but we have no plan of our own, and wei 
asked to adopt as our own one sketched out by one of the 
gerent parties out of three. It would be useless to propoal 
armistice to the Austrians, unless we gave them an idea off 
terms to be the subject of negotiation; but if we confine 
selves simply to the first condition, that Italy should be 
given up to the Italians, Austria would, of course, 
refuse. If we were to go farther, and communicate the 
of the Persigny scheme, we should identify ourselves with ; 
and be committed to an approval of it ; but that I should 1 
unwilling to do, though if such an arrangement were to 
worked out as the result of the war, we should, of course,! 
quiesce in it, and say that matters might have turned out 
It is to be observed that we are not told that this scheme 1 
the assent of the Sardinians nor of the Italians generally, 
would obviously fall far short of the wishes and expectation' 
Italy; and if we made it, we should be accused of having :" 
posed and stopped the allied armies in their career of 
and of having either endeavoured or of having succeeded to in 
on Italy a remnant of Austrian shackles, and of having 
trayed and disappointed the Italians at the very moment 
their prospects were the brightest. 

The scheme proposes to give Venetia and Modena to a 
Austrian archduke, as an independent Sovereign, by way of] 
interposing some neutral state between Piedmont and Austria. 
But what would be the result 1 The same Austrian influents 
and interference which have been the bane of Tuscany wouH 
soon afflict this new state. It would not be constitutional, anJ 
there would be worse neighbourhood between it and constate- 
tional Piedmont than there would be between Venetia as put 
of Piedmont and Austria, because Venetia and Piedmont wool! 
be separated only by an imaginary line; whereas the TjtA 
would be a buffer between Venetia and Austria. The freedom 
of Piedmont would excite the aspirations of the Venetian* 
Discontent and disturbance would arise. Austria would inter- 
vene, she could not see an archduke in trouble and not come 
and help him. She would again be brought into active inter 
ference in Italian affairs ; and if Modena were added to Venettf, 
Austria would again take her place in Central Italy. Fra4 
quarrels would arise because the old grievances would spring 
up anew, and fresh wars would inevitably follow. If ti* 


eheme is the Emperor's own, it is suggested by jealousy of 
Sardinia and tenderness for the Pope; but we feel neither of 
hepe mental affections, and are not bound to adopt them. The 
cbeme, moreover, throws wholly out of question the wishes of 
be Italians themselves, and we are asked to propose to the 
idligerents a parcelling out of the nations of Italy, as if we 
tad any authority to dispose of them. I cannot be a party to 
fanrigny's scheme. 

Jf the French Emperor is tired of his war, and finds the 
d]> tougher than he expected, let him make what proposals he 
ileases, and to whomsoever he pleases ; but let them be made 
a from himself formally and officially, and let him not ask us 
jather his suggestions, and make ourselves answerable for 

The French Emperor must have anticipated the 
efdsal of England to become his cat's-paw. . Anyhow, 
>n July 5, he acted for himself. On that day he sent 
Jeneral Fleury to the headquarters of the Emperor of 
Lustria with a letter proposing an armistice. General 
Henry arrived at a late hour, and the night was spent 
iy the Emperor Francis Joseph in council with Count 
Jechberg, Prince Metternich, and Count MensdorfF. 
SText morning Napoleon received a reply accepting the 
irmistice. Ajq. interview took place on the 8th between 
he two Emperors, and on the 11th, at Villafranca, a 
provisional treaty of peace was signed, containing aa 
bases the creation of an Italian Confederation, under 
the presidency of the Pope, the cession of Lombardy 
bo Sardinia, and the return of the Grand Dukes of 
Tuscany and Modena to their states. The Emperor 
Napoleon, however, obtained from the Austrian Em- 
peror a verbal assurance that no force should be 
employed to restore the Grand Dukes. The definitive 
treaty was to be settled in a Conference at Zurich. 
Cavour withdrew from the Sardinian Ministry on the 
announcement of this peace, although the spirit, which 
lie had raised and left behind him, was not destined to 
1» quelled until, in defiance of the imperial compro- 
mises at Yillafranca, it had worked out his project of a 
Northern Italian Kingdom. Lord Palmerston also lost 


no time in expressing his disappointment at the terms 
of the treaty : — 

94 Piccadilly : j nil let 13, 1869. 

Mon cher Persigny, — Si je comprends ce qui va dtre arrtti 
pour Tltalie, il est question d'une Confederation italienne oil 
l'Autriche prendrait place en vertu de la V^nitie; un tel 
arrangement serait funeste, et mettrait l'ltalie au desespoir. 

La plus grande partie des maux de l'ltalie, et l'esprit r£ 
volutionnaire qui s'y est montre, prennent lenr source dans 
1'ingerence de l'Autriche dans les affaires des Etats au-delA da 
Pd. Jusq'a present cette ing^rence n'a eu aucune base legitime, 
et un des buts que l'Empereur des Francois se proposait d'at- 
teindre etait d'aifranchir l'ltalie de cette ing6rence autrachienxtf 
en des pays ne faisant pas partie des possessions de rAutriche. * 

Mais une fois que l'Autriche devient membre d'une Con- 
federation Italienne, toute l'ltalie est livree pieds et maim 
li^s a TAutriche. Jamais l'Angleterre ne pourra s'associer « 
a un si mauvais arrangement. Au contraire, nous pourriom 
croire de notre devoir de protester hautement et en face de 
l'Europe contre un pareil asservissement des peuples de l'ltalie. 
L'Autriche devrait au contraire 6tre strictement exclue de toute 
inglrence politique ou militaire en dehors de ses frontie' res. El 
si cela n'est pas fait, rien n'est fait, et tout sera a recommencer 
en fort peu de temps. 

Confederation politique des Etats italiens, oui ou non, c'ert 
une question qui merite examen. II y a du pour et du contre. 
Le Pape, Naples, Toscane, Modena seraient toujours pour 
l'Absolutisme. Le Piemont seul pour un Rysteme liberal; 
comment on parviendrait a s'entendre reste a savoir. 

Union douaniere de toute l'ltalie avec un tarife moderi et 
liberal encourageant le commerce, quant a cela il n'y aurait que 
du 'pour' parmi les hommes intelligent*. Mais m&me avec 
cette union, les relations de l'Autriche ne devraient $tre que 
celles d'un pays etranger faisant un pacte avec un corps dont il 
n'est pas membre. 

Soyez bien sur que si l'Autriche n'est pas soigneusement 
exclue de toute ingerence, de toute espece, dans les affaires de 
l'ltalie, le sang francais a ete verse en vain, et la gloire de 
l'Empereur ne sera que de oourte duree. 

This scheme of an Italian Confederation was sot 
proposed by Austria, bnt by Louis Napoleon. It hid 
been floating in his mind for many years as a meant 


of substituting Italian support of the Pope for the 
support of French and Austrian troops. The English 
Cabinet stated without delay, in a despatch to Paris, 
their objections to it, which they felt sure the French 
Government would, on consideration, recognise. 

It further appeared likely that, in contravention 
of the verbal engagement given at Yillafranca, and 
looking merely to the text of the provisional treaty, 
Austria might attempt to employ her troops in re- 
staring the archdukes. An official remonstrance was 
therefore sent, in the month of August, by our Govern- 
ment to Vienna, which declared that * a provision for 
the employment of French or Austrian forces to put 
down the clearly expressed will of the people of 
Central Italy would, in the opinion of Her Majesty's 
Government, not be justifiable. Great Britain would 
feel it her duty to protest against a supplement to the 
treaty of Villafranca of that nature, if such were even 
contemplated.' The Emperor Napoleon also was urged 
to remain firm on this point. 

No doubt the French Emperor was in a dilemma, 
and looked to England to extricate him from it. The 
war was over, but not the conflict. Neither Eomagna 
nor the Duchies would agree to a confederation of 
which Austria would be the most powerful member, 
and in which the ecclesiastical domination of the 
Vatican was secured by the Presidency of the Pope. 
Bat Napoleon had bound himself not to move forward 
in the only direction which would satisfy the national 
aspirations of the people whose cause he had espoused. 
He therefore turned to England with the hope that 
she would propose a Congress, which should take the 
harden off his shoulders. Mr. Theodore Martin, in his 
'Life of the Prince Consort,' says that there was 
much cause for anxiety lest the Prime Minister and the 
Foreign Secretary would, at this time, ' be carried into 
tome imprudence by their enthusiasm for the Italian 
cause. 5 If enthusiasm is the proper word to apply to 
their feelings in the matter, it was at any rate cer- 

vol. II. B B 


tainly not the ill-regulated and unreflecting enthusiasm 
of youth, which often leads men to be imprudent, but 
it was the firm sympathy of experienced statesmen who 
recognised in the Italian cause not only a just cause, 
but one destined by the very nature of things to win in 
the end, and involving meanwhile the peace and pros- 
perity of Europe. But there was no fear at any time 
of England being led on where she would not wish to 
go, and the Cabinet declined even taking the French 
proposals into consideration until the preliminaries of 
peace had been reduced into the form of a treaty. If 
Austria then expressed no objection to a Conference, 
the British Government signified that they would not 
by any act of theirs be the means of preventing Euro- 
pean concert. 

In the work already referred to the author also 
implies that the Foreign Office at this juncture was 
unnecessarily eager to communicate its views to the 
parties concerned, and that it was no business of Eng- 
land to intermeddle in the bad peace which the French 
Emperor had made, but that the proper course for her 
to maintain was perfect silence. Lord John Russell, 
in a letter to Lord Palmerston, dated Abergeldie, Sep- 
tember 11, 1859, stated in the following words how he 
met this criticism : — 

I maintained that so far as regarded the Emperors, and the 
transfer of the province of Lombardy from one to the other, we 
had never said a word. But the state of Italy was another 
question. It had occupied our Government for years, and had 
during these years been a source of anxiety. To say that be- 
cause two Emperors had treated the question at Villafranca we 
should suddenly become silent, and not try to prevent the re- 
newal of troubles, would be in ray opinion to desert onr duty. 
That the policy of the Cabinet was contained in two despatches 
for each of which there was a cause. The cause of the first was 
an invitation on the part of France to join in a Congress, to 
which we had replied by objecting to certain provisions of the 
peace, and supposed intentions of the Powers. The cause of the 
second was the apprehension that Austria might use force to 
restore the Archdukes. Against such a course we protested- 


I was willing to keep within the line of these despatches. But 
conversations with foreign ministers abroad raised fresh ques- 
tions, to which it was necessary to reply by fresh explanations. 

Naturally all this caused Lord Palmerston to be 
represented as very hostile to Austria, just as was the 
case in the former revQlutionary years. He denies it. 

94 Piccadilly : August 22, 1859. 

My dear Cowley, — I know that all the partisans of arbitrary 
government in Europe represent me as the bitter enemy of 
Austria, and I wish whenever you hear this to deny its truth. 
I am an enemy to bad government, to oppression and tyranny; 
and, unfortunately, the Austrian rule in Italy, as elsewhere, 
has been marked by those evils. I am an enemy, therefore, to 
the bad system of Austrian government, and heartily wish all 
Italians to be freed from the Austrian yoke. It would be 
better for Austria that this should be. It has been decided 
that Venetia shall still be a victim, but care ought to be taken 
that Austria be prevented, either as member of a Confederation, 
<*r in any other way, from interfering in the affairs of Italy 
beyond her own frontier. The Austrian Government is un- 
fortunately hated in many Austrian provinces north of the 
Alps, and especially in Hungary and Galicia. I wish with all my 
heart she would change her system, and conciliate the goodwill 
of her subjects; for I hold a great and powerful Austrian 
empire north of the Alps to be of the utmost importance for 
the general interests of Europe. 

Much is said at Paris of what are called the intrigues of 
Cavour — unjustly, I think. If it is meant that he has laboured 
for the enlargement of Piedmont and the freedom of Italy from 
foreign yoke and from Austrian rule, he will in history be 
called a patriot ; but the means he has employed may be good 
or bad. I know not what they have been ; but the end in view 
is, I am sure, the good of Italy. The people of the Duchies 
have as good a right to change their rulers as the people of 
England, France, Belgium, and Sweden ; and the annexation of 
the Duchies to Piedmont would be an unmixed good for Italy, 
and for France, and for Europe. I hope Walewski will not 
sway the mind of the Emperor to make the enslaving of Italy 
the end of a drama, which opened with the declaration, ' Italy 
free from the Alps to the Adriatic/ and * Tltalie rendue a elle- 

B B 2 


If the Italians are left to themselves all will go well ; td 
when it is said that if the French garrison were drawn amy 
from Rome, all the priests would be killed, the example of 
Bologna may be quoted, where the priests remain unmolested, 
and perfect order has been maintained. 

When the French, showed an evident leaning to 
Austria during the negotiations at Zurich, Lord Pal- 
merston pithily said that this famous declaration, 
6 FItalie rendue a elle-mSme ' was being turned into 
' FItalie vendue a FAutriche. , 

These negotiations proceeded very slowly, and were 
not finished till the autumn. The Duchies had abso- 
lutely refused to take back their sovereigns, and in 
September Tuscany and Eomagna had formally tendered 
their annexation to Sardinia* How, then, without the 
employment of force, was the proposed Treaty of Zurich 
to be reconciled with the stipulations of Villafranca? 
Towards the end of October, therefore, France became 
more than ever urgent for a Congress. Mr. Martin, in 
his ' Life of the Prince Consort/ l says that Lord John 
Eussell stated that Lord Palmerston and himself would 
advise the Cabinet to accede to the French Emperor's 
proposal, and implies that, superior counsels prevailing, 
their intentions were fortunately overruled. It is diffi- 
cult to reconcile this alleged statement of Lord John 
Russell's with the following note from him to Lord 
Palmerston and Lord Palmerston's endorsement, made 
the same day : — 

Pembroke Lodge : October 21, 1859. 
My deai- Palmerston, — On reading the articles of the Treaty 
of Zurich and reflecting upon the figure we should make in a 
Congress, I can see no reason sufficient to induce us to go to 
one. We cannot object to the transfer of Lombardy, but the 
clause alxnit the Duchies and the article about the Pope are 
especially objectionable. I cannot but think that by going into 
a Congress we should give some sanction to the Austrian doc- 
trine of the divine right of kings. The notion of a confedera- 
tion we have always scouted as a way of leading Sardinia back 
to the house of bondage. 

1 Vol. iv. p. 504. 


I should therefore be inclined to say in answer to Walewski's 
dispatch that our objections on the score of Venetia being part of 
the Italian Confederation are by no means removed — that the 
Pope's assurance that he will grant reforms when his authority 
is restored is of no value in our eyes, as we do not see how the 
authority of the Pope is to be re-established without the em- 
ployment of foreign force — that to such employment of foreign * 
force, either to re-establish the authority of the Pope or to 
restore the Archdukes in Tuscany and Modena, we have in- 
superable objections. The rights reserved to the Archdukes and 
to the Duchess of Parma by the Treaty of Zurich appear to us 
in the same light as the rights of the Count de Chambord and 
Prince Wasa — rights to respect and observance, but not to 
obedience and subjection on the part of France and Sweden. 
That if the independence of Italy mentioned in the Treaty of 
Zurich, is not to be illusory, the rights of the Italian people 
ought to be respected and observed. Yet if the Congress should 
decide to use force, what would be the position of Great 
Britain? She would only have to protest and withdraw. 
France would be in a similar position, but France has bound 
herself by engagements to which Great Britain is not a party. 
For these reasons, etc. Yours truly, 

J. Bussell. 

Lord Palmerston's endorsement on this note is as 
follows : * I entirely agree with John Russell, and had 
already come to the same conclusions/ — P. 21, 10-59. 

It is true that a few days later these views were 
modified, but it is acknowledged how ' evenly balanced 
the arguments were on both sides.' The ground finally 
taken by the Foreign Secretary was that, as we already 
had differences with France about China, Morocco, the 
Suez Canal, &c, a blank refusal of her proposed Con- 
gress would be the prelude to a total divergence of 
views between the two countries. The decision, there- 
fore, finally arrived at by the Cabinet was not to decline 
the Congress, if it were clearly understood beforehand 
that the declaration made against the employment of 
foreign force would be maintained and acted upon, and 
provided there was nothing in the invitation contrary 
to the already declared policy of England. This deci- 


sion was made known to the French Government, which 
was to issue the invitations to the other Powers. 

There was a dispute this year between Spain and 
Morocco, which, as affecting English interests, at- 
tracted Lord Palmerston's attention. Spain demanded 
a rayon of territory round her fortress of Ceuta on the 
African coast. This was agreed to by the Moors, but 
they could not come to a settlement as to what 
should be the boundary lines of the territory to be 

Broadlands : October 11, 1859. 

My dear John RuBsell, — It is plain that France aims, 
through Spain, at getting fortified points on each side of the 
Gut of Gibraltar, which, in the event of war between Spain and 
France on the one hand, and England on the other, would, by a 
cross fire, render that strait very difficult and dangerous to pass, 
and thus virtually to shut us out of the Mediterranean. The 
distance between part of the African coast and the Spanish 
coast is only eight miles. With a fortified port on each side,, 
and guns that would carry three miles or more, a fleet of mer- 
chantmen or of transports would have some difficulty in keeping 
out of fire, especially if on each side there were a flotilla of gun- 
boats, protected by the guns of the fortresses, firing from a 
certain distance out from these fortresses, and presenting but a 
small mark to any ships-of-war convoying the merchantmen or 
transports. As things now stand such vessels would be safe by 
keeping well over to the African coast, but they would no longer 
be so if that coast belonged to France or Spain. 

The French Minister of War or of Marine said the other 
day that Algeria never would be safe till France possessed a 
port on the Atlantic coast of Africa. Against whom would such 
a port make Algeria safe? Evidently only against England; 
and how could such a port help France against England) 
Only by tending to shut us out of the Mediterranean. 

I still think that the Spanish Government are determined 
to pick a quarrel with Morocco, and that their first act will be 
to take Tangier, and their last to evacuate it ; and that the best 
way of preventing a serious difference between us and Spain 
would be to ask the Emperor of Morocco to request us to- 
occupy Tangier in trust for him during hostilities with Spain, 
if war with Spain should break out. 


War was declared a few days after this. Ifc was 
intimated to the Spaniards that if Tangier were occu- 
pied by their troops, we could not permit the occupa- 
tion to be prolonged after the close of the war. The 
Spanish Foreign Minister promised that Spain ' would 
not take possession of any point on the Straits the 
position of which would give her a superiority threaten- 
ing the navigation/ On this assurance being given, 
and the undertaking being observed, Great Britain 
remained neutral. 

The next letter refers to the fortifications which 
were afterwards constructed. It was a subject much 
canvassed at the time, and on which Lord Palmerston 
pas excessively anxious. 

There could be no question which so thoroughly 
ested the patriotism of a British statesman, because the 
aore it was successful the less likely it was to be popu- 
lar. The fact that we were placed in a state of ade- 
uate defence was precisely the fact that rendered any 
ttack upon us unlikely; and if we were never attacked, 
k was sure to be said that our defences were uncalled 
ar. But we must remember that though the boy who 
ried ' wolf did so often when the wolf did not appear, 
te was right in the main, for the wolf did come at last, 
nd the flock was eaten because the cry had been dis- 
)elieved. We might as well have no locks on our doors 
aid no bars to our windows, because thieves do not 
attempt to break into our houses every night. 

94 Piccadilly : December 15, 1859. 

My dear Gladstone, — Sidney Herbert has asked me to sum- 
mon a Cabinet for to-morrow, that we may come to a decision 
on a fortification question, and I am most anxious that the 
arrangement which he has proposed should be adopted. 

The main question is whether our naval arsenals and some 
other important points should be defended by fortifications or 
not ; and I can hardly imagine two opinions on that question. 
It is quite clear that if, by a sudden attack by an army landed 
*a strength, our dockyards were to be destroyed, our maritime 
power would for more than half a century be paralysed, and our 


colonies, our commerce, and the subsistence of a large port of 
our population would be at the mercy of our enemy, who would 
be sure to show us no mercy. We should be reduced to the 
rank of a third-rate power, if no worse happened to us. 

That such a landing is, in the present state of things, pos- 
sible, must be manifest. No naval force of ours can effectually 
prevent it. Blockades of a hostile port are no longer possible, 
as of yore. The blockading squadron must be under sail, be- 
cause there would be no means of supplying it with coals 
enough to be always steaming, while the outrushing fleet would 
come steaming on with great advantage, and might choose its 
moment when an on-shore wind had compelled the blockades 
to haul off. One night is enough for the passage to our coast, 
and twenty thousand men might be landed at any point before 
our fleet knew that the enemy was out of harbour. There 
could be no security against the simultaneous landing of twenty 
thousand for Portsmouth, twenty thousand for Plymouth, and 
twenty thousand for Ireland. Our troops would necessarily be 
scattered about the United Kingdom; and with Portsmouth 
and Plymouth as they now are, those two dockyards and all 
they contain would be entered and burnt before twenty thou- 
sand men could be brought together to defend either of them. 

Then, again, suppose the manoeuvre of the first Napoleon 
repeated, and a large French fleet, with troops on board, to start 
for the West Indies, what should we do ? Would the nation be 
satisfied to see our fleet remain at anchor at Torbay or Portland, 
leaving our colonies to their fate? And if we pursued the 
French, they might be found to have doubled back, to hare 
returned to the Channel, and for ten days or a fortnight to have 
the command of the narrow seas. Now the use of fortifications 
is to establish for a certain number of days (twenty-one to 
thirty) an equation between a smaller inside and a larger force 
outside, and thus to give time for a relieving force to arrive. 
This in our case would just make the difference between safety 
and destruction. But if these defensive works are necessary, ft 
is manifest that they ought to be made with the least possible 
delay ; to spread their completion over twenty or thirty years 
would be folly, unless we could come to an agreement with a 
chivalrous antagonist not to molest us till we could inform huu 
we were quite ready to repel his attack. We are told that these 
works might, if money were forthcoming, be finished possibly 
in three, or latest four years — long enough this to be kept in & 
state of imperfect defence. 


jBut how is the money, estimated in round numbers at ten 
ren millions, to be got 1 There are two ways : annual 
>n, to raise for this purpose over and above all other ex- 
a third or a fourth of this sum, or the raising a loan for 
rhole amount, payable in three or four annual instalments, 
interest, in twenty or thirty years. The first method 
evidently be the best in principle, and the cheapest, but 
"len would be heavy, and the danger would be that after 
year the desire for financial relief might prevail over a 
lent sense of danger, and the annual grants would dwindle 
to their present insufficiency ; and the works would thus 
indefinitely unfinished. The second course has the 
itage of being financially as light, or nearly so, as the pre- 
systein, because the annual repayment of principal and 
st would be but little heavier than the present annual 
while we should gain the same advantage of early com- 
>n of works which would be secured by the greater financial 
then of the first plan. 

Arrangements of this kind have been deemed, by the de- 
late judgment and action of Parliament, wise and proper 
private persons. Why should they not be so for a nation, 
regard to outlays of the same nature as those for which 
pate persons have been by law enabled to charge their 
tfces ? The objection to borrowing for expenditure is stronger 
Individuals than for a nation. 

The individual, if he went on borrowing for annual expenses, 
lid end by having no income left to live upon or to assign 
l fresh lender. A nation would, perhaps, in the end come to 
same standstill, but its power of increasing its income is 
iter than that of an individual ; but still Parliament has 
ouraged and enabled private persons to borrow money for 
manent improvement of their estates, the money so borrowed 
be repaid in a limited number of years. 
If we do not ourselves propose such a measure to Parlia- 
at, it will infallibly be proposed by somebody else, and will 
carried, not indeed against us, because I for one should vote 
h the proposer, whoever he might be, but with great dis- 
dit to the Government for allowing a measure of this kind, 
olving, one may say, the fate of the empire, to be taken out 
their hands. People would say, and justly too, that we and 
* proposer ought to change places, and that he and his friends 
I shown themselves fitter than we were to assume the re- 
usibility of taking care ' ne quid detrimenti respublica capiat.' 


In accordance with these views he moved a resolu- 
tion in the following session providing nine millions 
for the purpose of fortifying our dockyards and arsenals. 
His proposals were founded on the report of a Eoyal 
Commission which had enquired, during the pre- 
ceding autumn, into our means of defence. The reso- 
lution was adopted by the House by a large majority, 
and the results of his action are seen in our existing 
forts and lines round Portsmouth, Plymouth, Chatham, 
and Cork. 




tevee may have been the previous differences which 
between Lord Palmerston and Lord Bussell in the 
te of their long career, these two statesmen were, 
Lg the years which covered the second Palmerston 
nistration, thoroughly united, both in their general 
I of policy and also as to the best manner of giving 

a the year I860, Italian affairs absorbed almost the 
9 interest of foreign events, and both ministers had 
leir one aim the speedy realisation of an independent 
inited Italy. In the following memorandum, drawn 
f Lord Palmerston and circulated among his col- 
les, we find sketched out the policy which, in 
anient with the Foreign Secretary, he wished to 
le. We must, however, in order to appreciate it, 
1 the position of matters at the opening of the 

■he Congress which, by the Treaty of Zurich, France 
Austria had engaged themselves to summon had 
postponed. The British Government had then 
\ forward and proposed that France and Austria 
Id agree not to interfere for the future by force in 
nternal affairs of Italy, that the French Emperor 
Id concert with the Pope for the evacuation of 
e, and that Sardinia should not send troops into 
ral Italy until its several states had voted as to 
• future destiny, she being at liberty to do so as soon 


as a vote for annexation to her was passed. To these 
proposals France had instantly assented. Meanwhile 
the Duchies had preserved internal order, and had given 
unmistakable signs of their intention to declare for 
annexation to Sardinia if left to themselves. France 
had demanded and was about to receive the cession of 
Savoy from Sardinia as an equivalent for the increase 
of territory which the latter was on the point of ac- 
quiring. Lord Palmerston had foreseen this result, 
but, though deploring it, had considered that the unity 
of Northern Italy was cheaply purchased at the price. 
Lord Palmerston's memorandum was as follows : — 

Broadlands : January 5, 1860. 

The affairs of Italy are coming to a crisis, and it is indis- 
pensably necessary that the English Government should come 
without further delay to a decision as to the course which Eng- 
land is to pursue. But, in truth, that course has been already 
marked out. The English Government might have determined 
that, in regard to Italian affairs, England should abdicate itf 
position as one of the great Powers of Europe. We might have 
said that we live in an island, and care not what may he done 
on the Continent ; that we think only of making money, and 
of defending our own shores ; and that we leave to others the 
task of settling as they like the affairs of the continent of 
Europe. But such has not been the policy of the wisest and 
greatest statesmen who have taken part in the government of 
this country. We might have deemed the present an excep- 
tional case ; we might have said the -Emperor Napoleon hie 
got into a scrape about Italian affairs ; let him get out of it ai 
he can : it is not our business to help him. But we rightly 
considered that what is at issue is not the interests of the Em- 
peror Napoleon, but the interests of the people of Italy, and, j 
through them, the welfare and peace of Europe. Therefiwt i 
when a proposal was made that a Congress should meet to con- 
sider how best the independence and welfare of Italy could he 
secured, and when England was invited to be a party to thai 
Congress, we accepted the invitation. 

But it would have been unworthy of the Government of ft 
great Power like England to have accepted such an invitation 
without having decided upon the policy which we were to pur- 
sue when in the Congress. We had a policy, and we lost no 



making that policy known to the principal Powers in- 
the Congress. That policy is in accordance with those 
ties which English statesmen in our times have professed 
upon, and which are the foundation of public opinion 
id. We declared that in going into Congress we should 
stand upon the principle that no force should be em- 
for the purpose of imposing upon the people of Italy any 
I of government or constitution, that is to say, that the 
|» of Italy, and especially of Central Italy, should be left 
|d determine their own condition of political existence. We 
therefore go into Congress, if Congress there is to be, not 
fcymen go into their box, discarding preconceived opinions 
sound to be determined by what we hear in Congress, but 
statesmen with a well-matured and deliberately formed 
fj and with the intention of endeavouring to make thai 
f prevail. What is the best way of accomplishing this 
oee 1 Why, obviously to persuade those Powers to agree 
us, who are most able to sway the course of events in Italy 
bo bring them to the result we wish for. 
IVhat are those Powers 1 Obviously France and Sardinia. 
ria, the Pope, and the King of Naples have views directly 
lite to ours ; and the other states to be represented in Con- 
i are too far off to have the same influence as France and 
inia on Italian affairs. 

!t is demonstrable, therefore, that we ought to endeavour to 
I to an understanding with France and Sardinia, for the 
1086 of common and united action with them in regard to 
natters to be treated of in Congress. We need take little 
ble about Sardinia, because we know that her views tally 
i our own ; we can have little doubt as to the inclination of 
Emperor Napoleon, because he has declared over and over 
D in manifestoes, in speeches, in letters and other communi- 
ons that his object is to free Italy from foreign domination, 
oake Italy free from the Alps to the Adriatic, and to 
idre lltalie a elle-m^me.' There can be no reasonable doubt, 
efore, that both France and Sardinia would unite with Eng- 
L in maintaining the principle that the Italians should be 
red against foreign compulsion, and should be left free to 
rmine, according to their own will, what shall be their 
ire political condition. But what is the best time for en- 
suring to establish this understanding ? Shall we take 
is now, or shall we wait till the Congress is assembled, and 
some proposal is made by Austria or by the Pope, or by some 



her Power, which would be at variance with our views f 
Common sense seems to point out that if such an understanding 
is to be aimed at, we ought to endeavour to establish it without 
delay, and not to allow France and Sardinia to go into Congress 
ignorant whether England would or would not support eBid- 
ciently the principles which she has theoretically declared. To 
put off endeavouring to establish an understanding with France { 
And Sardinia till after the Congress had met and had begun its ' 
discussions, would be the most unbusinesslike proceeding that 
.could well be imagined, and would, in all probability, expose us 
to deserved disappointment. Austria does not trust thus to the 
-chapter of accidents, but has been actively employed in canvass- 
ing for support to her views. 

But what is the understanding or agreement which we 
-ought to establish with France and Sardinia) Clearly a joint 
determination to prevent any forcible interference by any foreign 
Power in the affairs of Italy, This, it is said, would be a league 
against Austria. No doubt it would be, as far as regards the 
interference of Austria by force of arms in the affairs of Italy; 
and such a triple league would better deserve the title of holy 
-alliance than the league which bore that name. 

But such an engagement might lead us into war. War with 
^Wiom ? War with Austria. Well, suppose it did, would that 
war be one of great effort and expense ? Clearly not. France, 
Sardinia, and Central Italy would furnish troops more than 
enough to repel any attempt which Austria could make to co- 
erce Sardinia or Central Italy. Our share in such a war would 
be chiefly, if not wholly, naval ; and our squadron in the Adri- 
atic would probably be the utmost of our contribution, unless 
we were asked to lend a couple of regiments to garrison some 
point on the Adriatic, which, however, we should probably not 
be asked to do, and if asked, we might not consent to do. We 
ought not to be frightened by words; we ought to examine 
things. But is such a war likely % On the contrary, it is in 
the highest degree probable * that such an engagement between 
England, France, and Sardinia would be the most effectual 
means of preventing a renewal of wqr in Italy. As long as 
England keeps aloof, Austria may speculate upon our joining her 
in a war between her gn the one hand, and France and Sardinia 
on the other. It is so natural that we should side with France 
and Italy, that our holding back from doing so would be looked 
upon by Austria as a proof that there was some strong under- 
current which prevented us from doing so; and the Austrian 



(fernment would not unnaturally reckon that when the war 

| broken out, that undercurrent would drive us to side with 

against France ; and this speculation would be a great 

unent to Austria to take a course leading to war. If, 

le contrary, we make it publicly known that we engaged v - 

jfelves heartily on the side of France and Italy, it might be 
Led, as confidently as anything can be affirmed as to a future 
that there would be and could be no renewal of war in 

r, and the triple alliance, while it would be honourable to 
id (I might say, the only course that would be honourable 
jland), would secure the continuance of peace in Italy, and 
reby avert one danger to the general peace of Europe. 

But it is said we cannot trust the Emperor Napoleon, and 
m we had entered into this triple alliance, he would throw 
jyver and make some arrangement of his own without con- 
tfng us. It is no doubt true that such was the course pur- 
d by Austria during the war which ended in 1815. Austria 
k our subsidies, bound herself by treaty not to make peace 
bout our concurrence, sustained signal defeat in battle, and 
fcipitately made peace without our concurrence. But on 
at occasion has the Emperor Napoleon so acted 1 On none, 
i differed with us about certain conditions and the interpre- 
lon of certain conditions of the treaty of peace with Russia, 
I the points in dispute were settled substantially in confor- 
|y with our views. There is no ground for imputing to him 
1 faith in his conduct towards us as allies. But it is said that 
has no steadiness of purpose, and the agreement of Villafranca 
i proof of this. That agreement was certainly much short of 
> declarations of intention with which he began the war, but 
bad great difficulties of many kinds to contend with in further 
Tying on the war ; and though we, as lookers on, may think, 
1 perhaps rightly, that if he had persevered those difficulties 
old have faded away, yet there can be no doubt that he 
night them at the time real ; and he is not the only instance 
a sovereign or a general who has at the end of a war or a 
npaign accepted conditions of peace less full and complete 
in wnat he expected or demanded when hostilities began. 

But there is no ground for imputing to Napoleon unsteadi- 
ss of purpose in regard to his views about Italy. I have, 
ring tne last four or five years, had at different times oppor- 
aities of conversation with him upon many subjects, and, 
long others, upon the affairs of Italy, and I always found him 
xmgly entertaining the same views and opinions which have 



filled his mind since January of last year, in regard to forcing 
Italy from Austrian domination, and curtailing the temporal 
sovereignty of the Pope. There seems, therefore, no reason to 
apprehend that if we came to an understanding with France and 
Sardinia, for the purpose of maintaining the principle that no 
force should be employed to coerce the free will of the Italians, 
the Emperor Napoleon should turn round and leave us in the 
lurch. There is every reason, on the contrary, to be confident 
that by such an agreement with France and Sardinia, we should 
without war complete a settlement of Italy highly honourable 
to the Powers who brought it about, and full of advantage, not 
to Italy alone, but to Europe in general. 

I have argued thus far on the supposition that the Congress 
will meet, and I think it most probable that it will meet. 
Austria and the Pope look to the Congress (mistakenly, I trust 
and believe, and mistakenly if the proposed concert with France 
and Sardinia is established) as the means by which the Arch- 
dukes are to be restored and Romagna brought back to obedi- 
ence. These two Powers will not lightly let the Congress slip 
tlirough their fingers. The Emperor Napoleon also wishes the 
Congress to meet, in order to relieve him from responsibility as 
to the settlement of Italy. The probability, therefore, is that 
the difficulty arising out of the pamphlet 1 will be got over, and 
that the Congress will meet. But if that difficulty should prove 
insurmountable, and the Congress should be given up, every- 
thing which I have said in this memorandum would equally 
apply; or rather, I should say, the necessity of coming to an 
agreement with France and Sardinia would be stronger still 
In that case matters would have to be settled by diplomatic nego- 
tiation or by force of arms ; and in either way an agreement 
between England, France, and Sardinia would carry into effect 
the objects which such an agreement might have in view. 

It is said, however, that although the course now recom- 
mended might in itself be right and proper, it would not be 
approved by the country nor by Parliament. 

My deliberate opinion is that it would be highly approved 
by the country, upon the double ground of its own merits, and 

1 Le, Pape et le Congrfo, by M. de la Gueronniere. Supposed to have 
been dictated by the Emperor himself. It advocated depriving the 
Pope of his temporal power except over the city of Borne. Thi* 
pamphlet was the indirect cause of the failure of the Congress. Austria 
required from the French Government an undertaking not to support 
the measures advocated in it. France hesitating, Austria declined to 
appear at the Congress. 


of its tendency to avert a rupture with France, and to secure 
ihe continuance of peace with our neighbour. I am equally of 
opinion that it would be approved by Parliament; but if, by 
Lany combination of parties, an adverse decision were come to, it 
V ould, in my opinion, be the duty of the Government to appeal 
'from Parliament to the country. My belief is that such an 
appeal would be eminently successful ; but if it were not, I 
"would far rather give up office for maintaining the principle on 
which the course which I recommend would be founded, than 
letain office by giving that principle up. 


There was no need, however, of any formal league 
like this 'triple alliance. 5 The influence of the two 
Western Powers sufficed to restrain any forcible inter- 
vention, if such had been contemplated. In the 
month of March, Tuscany and Emilia declared by an 
immense majority in favour of annexation to Sardinia, 
and King Victor Emmanuel formally received them 
into the Eiedmontese monarchy, Italy was already 
-half-way on her road to unity. 

The massacre of the Maronites by the Druses with 
the connivance of the local authorities in the neigh- 
bourhood of Beyrout and Damascus led this year to 
ihe despatch of English ships and French troops to 
Syria, under the provisions of a convention between the 
five Powers and Turkey, after we had declined a pro- 
josal made by France to invite the Viceroy of Egypt 
to Syria Lord Palmerston consented, but unwillingly, 
to the expedition, fearing lest there would be much 
trouble in getting the French out again. This was, 
indeed, the case ; for, although all danger of renewed 
violence had passed away by the time they arrived on 
Hie coast, it was not until the latter end of 1861 that 
they retired; and during this interval continuous re- 
presentations to urge their departure were deemed 
necessary by the British Government. Before they leffc> 
however, the coercive influe&ce of their presence had 
Secured the due punishment of the guilty, and had 
-enabled the British and French Commissioners to 

vol. n. C C 


establish, a system of administration which brought 
about in the Lebanon a durable state of peace and good 

Lord Palmerston had, no doubt, a personal partiality 
for Napoleon TIL, and frilly acknowledged that his 
conduct had in many instances been that of an honour- 
able ally, but he was not blinded to the tendency which 
this active-minded Prince, whose youth had been passed 
in schemes of personal ambition, had to the forming 
and nurturing of national projects which might be 
more or less inconvenient to his neighbours ; and the 
English Government under Lord Palmerston, though 
very desirous to be friendly, would not in any emer- 
gency have been subservient to that of Prance. A 
short note to our ambassador at Paris may serve as an 
illustration : — l 

John Russell has shown me his private letter to yon I 
concur in all he says. We must not take the language of 
Thouvenel or the Emperor as ordinances from the book of fate. 
It is an old-established manoeuvre to represent as settled and 
inevitable that which one desires to accomplish, and thus 
beforehand to deaden resistance by making people imagine it 
hopeless. * 

The Emperor's mind seems as full of schemes as a warren 
is full of rabbits, and, like rabbits, his schemes go to ground 
for the moment to avoid notice or antagonism. 

We had no ground for war, and no sufficient reasons for 
war about Nice and Savoy, nor could we by any obvious means 
have prevented their annexation ; but other questions may 
arise in regard to which England could not be thus passive. 

The illustration was very apt that compared the 
French Emperor's mind to a rabbit warren, for he was 
constantly working underground, but at no great depth* 
In 1863, for instance, conversing with Nigra, the Ita- 
lian minister at Paris, he told him that if the Italians 
wanted to get Rome they ought never to talk of it as 
their capital, just as he himself, desiring to have 
Brussels, never professed it openly, but proposed the 

1 To Lord Cowley, April 1860. 


>t contrary, and that, in that way, he was more likely 
get it than if he raised opposition by talking of it ! 
Lord Palmerston in the note quoted above pointed 
questions in regard to which England could not re- 
passive. One was the question of Genoa. When, 
on, it was suspected that France was to be repaid 
her acquiescence in Garibaldi's conquest of Sicily 
Naples by the cession of Genoa or the Island of 
Linia, he let it be understood that the fleet of 
jland would not be a passive witness of the trans- 
ion. If any such intention existed — of which there 
some evidence — his outspoken remonstrances acted 
li an effectual check to it. 

He was not so successful in his efforts on behalf of 
hritzerland, whose position was greatly affected by 
be annexation of Savoy to France. The two districts 
f Chablais and Faucigny, bordering on the Lake of 
leneva, had been declared by the treaties of 1815 to 
participate in the neutrality of Switzerland. It was at 
rat hoped that the Emperor would consent to hand 
ver these two northern districts of Savoy to the Swiss 
lonfederation. When this expectation vanished, it 
ras at any rate believed that France might be induced 
o cede a strip of territory, so as to leave the lake 
rholly to the Swiss, and to provide them with a strate- 
ic line on the frontier of the Valais. Lord Palmerston 
rrites in this sense to the French Ambassador, and 
ppeals with great tact to those considerations of 
enerosity which, on paper at any rate, have so much 
pparent influence with Frenchmen. 

94 Piccadilly : avril 17, 1860. 

Mon cher Persigny, — Soyez bien convaincu que nous sou- 
aitons sincerement de nous entendre avec la France sur cette 
uestion Savoyardo-Suisse, mais dans cette discussion la France 
b l'Angleterre ne partent pas du meme point de depart ; chez 
ous, ici, Thabitude est de conside'rer les questions politiques 
'apres ce que nous croyons leur resultat pratique, et chez vous, 
q France, c'est trop Thabitude de traiter toutes les questions 
olitiques, non pas sur le terrain du resultat pratique, mais sur 



le terrain de l'amour-propre national, et, si vous me permettez 
de vous le dire, c'est surtout, lorsque les arguments vous man- 
quent, qu'on se place a Paris le plus fortement sur le terrain de 
l'amour-propre. Oependant ce n'est pas la la bonne maniire 
d'envisager les questions de haute politique; mais le vrai 
amour-propre national ne doit-il pas conseiller a faire ce qui est 
juste et g^nereux et honorable ? et n'est-ce pas que la justice, la 
generosite* et l'honneur conseilleraient a la France de satisfaire 
aux reclamations legitimes de la Suisse 1 La France a demande* 
a la Sardaigne une frontiere strategique pour la surety militaire 
de la France. Est-ce juste que la France 6te a la Suisse la 
frontiere strategique que rEurope, la France elle-m^me inclose, 
avait donn^e a la Suisse pour la surety du territoire de la Con- 
federation? Tous les arguments dont la France s'est servie 
pour justifier sa demande, soutiennent plus encore la demande 
de la Suisse. Mais une grand e Puissance et un grand Souverain, 
en traitant avec un voisin faible, devraient se montrer non- 
seulement justes, mais gen^reux ; il n'est pas une faiblesse que 
d'agir ainsi, c'est une preuve de la conscience de sa force ; mais 
avec l'Empereur des Francais ce n'est pas seulement une ques- 
tion de generosite ; la reconnaissance y entre pour sa part. 
C'est en Suisse que l'Empereur a fait ses premieres etudes, et 
qu'il a commence a developper ce caractere qui lui a valu, 
depuis, des succ^s si eclatants ; c'est en Suisse plus tard, et dans 
des temps moins heureux que les dernieres dix annees, que l'Em- 
pereur a eu a se louer des procedes de la Suisse a son egard : il 
est impossible que l'Empereur ne sente pas de la bienveillance 
envers la Suisse. On croit en Europe que l'Empereur a donne' 
a esperer aux Suisses, qu'apr^s que la Savoie lui aurait e^te* 
cedee par la Sardaigne, il donnerait a la Suisse les parties neu- 
tralises ; ne serait-ce pas inconsequent de leur refuser ni&ne 
la frontiere strategique dont ils seraient contents ? Les bords 
du Lac de Geneve et la ligne strategique, qui couvre le Valais, 
paraissent essentiels pour la Suisse. Quant aux bords du Lac, 
fl est a remarquer que de toutes les raisons strategiques mises 
en avant par la France pour appuyer la demande de la cession 
de la Savoie, il n'y en a pas une qui s'applique aux bords du 
Lac de Geneve, tandis que toutes ces raisons s'appliquent a la 
demande que fait la Suisse de ne pas avoir sur le Lac un voisin 
aussi puissant que la France. Les stipulations dont on parte, 
par lesquelles la France s'engagerait a n'avoir aucun batiment 
arme sur le Lac, et de ne construire aucun e forteresse sur les 
bords, ne pourraient guere $ tre prises au serieux : il y a des in* 


yasions morales, tout comme des invasions militaires, et il est 
eesentiel a l'intere't commun de l'Europe que la Suisse continue 
a rester Suisse ; il ne s'agit pas dans cette affaire d'une question 
entre la France et l'Angleterre : c'eet un interdt europ4en, et 
non pas un interdt anglais, dont il s'agit, et c'est a l'Europe et 
non pas a TAngleterre que la France doit des 6gards a ce sujet. 
Pourquoi la France ne prendrait-elle pas l'initiative dans cette 
affaire ? pourquoi ne se ferait-elle pas un merite de contenter 
spontanement les justes desirs de ses voisins en Suisse? ne 
serait-ce pas agir en grand Seigneur, et cela sans rien sacrifier 
qui soit essentiel aux vrais intents de la France ? 

Soyez bien siir que, dans les temps ou nous vivons, la bonne 
opinion de l'Europe vaut tout autant qu'un petit bout de 

All that was obtained, however, was an article in 
the Treaty of Cession declaring that the King of 
Sardinia could only transfer the neutralised parts of 
Savoy on the conditions upon which he himself pos- 
sessed them. 

There is no doubt that Lord Palmerston by this 
time had become really distrustful of the intentions of 
the Emperor Napoleon. His attitude about Savoy was 
coupled with the open avowals of some French officers 
that it was the intention of, and a necessity for, France 
to annex Geneva. Pamphlets supposed to be published 
by the Emperor's permission were appearing and advo- 
cating territorial changes. Ortega, the martyr of the 
last Carlist rising, was reported to have declared that 
he had been encouraged in his enterprise by the 
Emperor; while the Portuguese minister in London 
stated it to be generally believed in the Peninsula that 
the Emperor of the French had agreed with Count 
Montemolin that if the Carlist attempt succeeded, the 
price of the acknowledgment and support of France 
was to have been the advance of the French frontier 
from the Pyrenees to the Ebro, or else the cession of 
the Balearic Islands, and that Spain was to have been 
assisted by France in conquering and annexing Portugal. 
Reports of the Emperor's conversation, derived from 
Unimpeachable sources, contained expressions of opinion 


that it was necessary for France to obtain the Palatinate, 
and to acquire Saarbruck and Saarlouis, places which, 
indeed, became in 1870 the first point of his attack od 
Prussia. The general concurrence of many other such 
indications, some, no doubt, false, and each by itself 
perhaps trivial, gave strength to the distrust which 
Lord Palmerston had already felt at the end of the 
previous year, when he wrote to Lord John Russell. 

Broadlands : November 4, 1859; 

My dear John Russell, — Till lately I had strong confidence 
in the fair intentions of Napoleon towards England, but of late 
I have begun to feel great distrust and to suspect that his 
formerly declared intention of avenging Waterloo has only lain 
dormant, and has not died away. He seems to have thought 
that he ought to lay his foundation by beating, with our aid, or 
with our concurrence, or our neutrality, first Russia and then 
Austria, and, by dealing with them generously, to make them 
his friends in any subsequent quarrel with us. In this, how- 
ever, he would, probably, find himself mistaken ; because with 
nations and governments resentments for former antagonism or 
gratitude for former benefits invariably give way to considera- 
tions of present and prospective interests; and Russia probably, 
and Austria certainly, would see no advantage in any great 
lowering of England for the augmentation of the preponderance 
of France. But this reasoning of mine may be wrong, and 
Russia, at least, might join France against us. 

Next, he has been assiduously labouring to increase his 
naval means, evidently for offensive as well as for defensive 
purposes; and latterly great pains have been taken to raise 
throughout France, and especially among the army and navy, 
hatred of England, and a disparaging feeling of our military 
and naval means. All this may be explained away, and may 
be accounted for by other causes than a deliberate purpose of 
hostility to England ; but it would be unwise in any English 
Government to shut its eyes to all these symptoms, and not to 
make all due preparations for the gale which the political baro- 
meter thus indicates, though it may possibly pass away. Of 
course we should take as ' argent comptant ' all their professions 
of * alliance intime et durable/ as "Walewski termed it in his 
China despatch ; and the only expression we ought to give of 
anything like suspicion should be in the activity and the scale 


of our defensive arrangements. In regard to them, however, 
we must not be overruled by financial economy. 

The incessant exertions which the French were 
making to place their navy upon the most complete 
and efficient footing did not tend to diminish the 
causes for anxietv. It was under these circumstances 
that Lord Palmerston urged forward our defensive 
preparations and the construction of fortifications, 
and encouraged the development of the Volunteer 
Bifle Movement. This was no mere ' invasion panic.' 
He felt that the salutary and restraining action of a 
great Power like England is not confined to the 
•employment of physical force. If such a Power is 
known to be strong within itself, and capable of 
•exertion when required, its diplomatic action will 
command attention, will often strongly influence the 
<x>urse of events, and, by dealing timely with beginnings, 
may prevent proceedings which, if unchecked, would 
lead to great and disastrous international convulsions. 

Lord Palmerston,' however, also feared direct action 
against England if we remained unprepared. He says 
in a letter to the Duke of Somerset : 

I have watched the French Emperor •narrowly, and have 
studied his character and conduct. You may rely upon it that 
at the bottom of his heart there rankles a deep and inextin- 
guishable desire to humble and punish England, and to avenge, 
if he can, the many humiliations, political, naval, and military, 
which, since the beginning of this century, England has, by 
herself and her allies, inflicted upon France. He has sufficiently 
organised his military means ; he is now stealthily but steadily 
organising his naval means ; and, when all is ready, the over- 
ture will be played, the curtain will draw up, and we shall have 
a very disagreeable melodrama. 

The following conversation with Count Flahault 
and the letter to Count Persigny are very character- 
istic. Lord Palmerston had an enviable power of 
telling hard truths under a sense of duty, while he 
avoided giving offence, owing to the frankness and 
geniality of his manner : — 


Memorandum of. a Conversation with Count Flahault on Tuesday, 

March 27, 1860. 

Count Flahault came to me at a quarter after four, just a* 
I was going down to the House of Commons. He said he was- 
going to Paris next morning, and he wished to know what he 
should say from me to the Emperor. I said I could not wait a 
minute, as I had to be in the House to answer a question, but 
that if he would go down with me in my brougham we might 
talk as we went along. To this he agreed. I then referred to 
what Lord John had said. He objected to that reference, 
saying that what had fallen from Lord John was personally 
offensive to the Emperor. I asked what part. He said not the 
latter part, which related to concert with other Powers ; that 
was political, and could not be objected to ; but Lord John had 
expressed distrust of the Emperor. I said distrust might be* 
founded on either of two grounds : either upon the supposition 
of intentional deceit, or upon such a frequent change of purpose* 
and of conduct as to show that no reliance could be placed upon 
the continuance of the intentions or policy of the moment, and 
Count Flahault must admit that, without imputing the first, 
there is ample ground for a feeling founded on the second con- 
sideration. Count Flahault said his great object was to prevent 
war between the two countries. I said that I feared the- 
Emperor and Thouvenel had schemes and views which tended 
to bring about that result, and might array Europe against 
France. Count Flahault did not fear that, but was appre- 
hensive that irritation on both sides might bring on war between 
England and France. I said that I was most anxious to prevent 
such a war ; but if it was forced upon England, England would 
fearlessly accept it, whether in conjunction with a confederated 
alliance, or singly and by herself ; that the nation would rise' 
and rally as one man ; although, speaking to a Frenchman, 1 
ought perhaps not to say so, yet I could not refrain from 
observing that the examples of history led me to conclude that 
the result of a conflict between English and French, upon any- 
thing like equal terms, would not be unsatisfactory to the former. 

Count Flahault said that he had been at the battle of 
Waterloo, and knew what English troops are, but that the 
French army now is far superior to that which fought on that 
day. I said no doubt it is, and so is the present English army; 
but with regard to the excellence of the French army, I would 
remind Count Flahault of what passed between Marshal Tallard 



I the Duke of Marlborough, when the former was taken 
kmer at the battle of Blenheim : 'Tons venez, milord/ 
I the Marshal, ' de battre les meilleures troupes de l'Europe/ 
ceeptez toujours,' replied Marlborough, 'celles qui les ont 
toes.' ' But/ said Count Flahault, ' what I fear is an in- 
km of this country, for which steam affords such facilities, 
1 which would be disastrous to England. 1 I replied that, 
im tells both ways, for defence as well as for attack; and 
t as for invasion, though it would no doubt be a temporary 
I, we are under no apprehension as to its results. That a 
• between England and France would doubtless be disastrous 
nth countries, but it is by no means certain which of the 

> would suffer the most. 

Arrived at the House of Commons, we took leave of each 
Br. Count Flahault said he should not say anything to the 
peror calculated to increase the irritation which he expected 
and, but would endeavour to calm. I said that of course 
mt Flahault would judge for himself what he should say, 
he must have observed what is the state of public feeling 
, opinion in this country. The conversation was carried on 
the most friendly manner, as between two private friends 

> had known each other for a long course of years. 

Broadlands : octobre 18, 1860. 

Mon cher Persigny,— Borthwick s'est rendu ici il y a 
Iques jours, d'apres votre desir, pour me donner communica- 
i de la conversation que vous avez eue avec lui. 
La substance de ce qu'il m'a raconte comme le resume de ce 

> vous lui avez dit est a peu pres que rEmpereur souhaite, 
mrd'hui comme toujours, paix avec tous et alliance avec 
m ; mais que le maintien de cette alliance depend beaucoup 
ious. Vous avez dit que dans les masses en France il y a 
lvais vouloir envers l'Angleterre ; que rEmpereur peut 
rimer et contraindre ce sentiment, tant qu'il est aide par 

> politique amicale de la part du Gouvernement anglais, et- 
, ctfqu'il faudrait de notrepart, ce serait d'exprimer confiance 
I Empereur, et de nous abstenir de toute tentative d'organiser 
» coalition europeenne contre la France. Que si nous devions 
rsuivre un autre et different systeme, il y aurait danger de- 
rre entre les deux pays, chose que vous considereriez comme 
lorable pour les deux. Mais vous avez ajout^ que dans 
it des preparatifs et des moyens guerriers sur terre et sur 
: des deux pays, le resultat d'une telle guerre ne serait peut- 


■etre pas favorable pour nous; qu'avec vos batiments blinds 
vous pourriez detruire nos chantiers, et que le resultat d'une 
telle lutte serai t peut-6tre de mettre la France a la t&te d'une 
coalition europeenne dirigee contre rAngleterre, isolee par sa 
politique autant que par la geographie, et finalement vous avez 
Huggere l'idee que, lorsque je vais a Leeds vers la fin du mois 
prochain, je pourrais utilement pour les deux pays profiter de 
l'occasion pour exprimer dans un discours notre confiance en les 
intentions pacifiques et desinteressees de l'Empereur. 

Eh bien ! je suis toujours bien aise d'apprendre, soit par les 
discours de l'Empereur, soit parce qu'on nous rapporte de see 
conversations, que la politique exterieure de la France est 
pacifique et desinteressee ; et quant a la question de paix ou de 
guerre entre nos deux pays, vous pouvez 6tre sur qu'il n'y a 
personne en Angleterre qui voudrait la guerre, et qui ne desire 
pas la paix. 

Mais pour ce qui regarde la guerre, l*histoire du passe nous 
rassure quant aux chances de l'avenir. II n'y a certainement 
pas de nation qui puisse se vanter d'etre plus brave que In 
nation francaise, mais je crois que nos hommes ont quelques 
dix minutes de tenacite de plus que les v6tres ; et lorsque le 
courage est egal des deux cdtes, c'est la tenacite qui decide da 
sort du combat. Pour ce qui regarde l'application de la science 
et des arts mecaniques a la guerre, je crois qu'il n'y a pas grande 
•difference entre les deux pays, soit pour les operations sur terre, 
soit pour celles sur mer; mais nous avons plus de fer etde 
charbon que vous, et notre industrie en ces matieres est plus 
<leveloppee que la vdtre. 

La grande difference entre les deux pays consiste en ceci, 
que tous nos preparatifs, soit militaires, soit navals, sont essen- 
tiellement defensifs, tandis que les v6tres ont du moins l'ap- 
l>arence d'etre destines pour des operations offensives. 

Si par consequent les autres gouvernements de l*Europe 
commencent, non pas a se coaliser pour attaquer la France, 
chose a laquelle la demence seule pourrait penser, mais poor 
H'entr'aider dans le cas ou la France devenait agressive, ce sont 
les actes recents de la France et son attitude presente qui seuls 
en sont les causes. Mais ceci ne donne a la France- aucun juste 
sujet de plainte. II n'y a pas un homme en Angleterre qui 
songerait a organiser une coalition pour attaquer la France 
tranquille et paisible ; mais il n'y a pas un homme qui ne ferait 
son possible pour organiser une coalition, pour restreindre 1* 
France ambitieuse et envahissante. 


II resulte de tout ceci, que l'Empereur a entre ses mains 
decisions de paix ou de guerre pour TEurope. J'espere 
Ichoisira la paix, et si cela est, nous l'aiderons de tout 
re ooeur a la maintenir. 

Nous savons tres-bien que, parmi les masses en France, il y 
lauvais vouloir envers 1 Angleterre. II n'est pas surprenant 
i les passions haineuses des nos guerres aient survecu plus 
gtemps en France que chez nous. Dans notre pays toute la 
illation est si activement occup6e de la vie politique du 
Bent, qu'elle oublie bien vite le pass£, et ne porte ses regards 
i une petite distance dans l'avenir. 

Chez vous en France, les masses ne prennent que peu de 
t a la vie politique du present, et par consequent efies re- 
ment beaucoup plus longtemps les souvenirs du pass£, et 
8 tournent leurs regards plus activement vers Tavenir. Mais 
tr vous dire franchement la verite, il nous revient de plusieurs 
sonnes que les agents du Gouvernement francais ne se 
ntrent pas faches de voir ce mauvais vouloir se propager, 
xsrottre et se perp£tuer. 

Quant a Leeds, j'y vais pour rencontrer des ouvriers, et pour 
r parler menage et Education, et non pas pour faire un dis- 
rs politique. 

Mille amities, 


At the same time he acquaints the English Am- 
ssador at Paris with the correspondence that had 
ten place. 

Broadlands : November 2, 1860. 

My dear Cowley, — As you say that Persigny has only sent 
Tacts from my letter, I think it right to send you a full copy 
it, which I wish you to show to Thouvenel, because the first 
rt of the letter accounts for my having written at all, and for 
it which I did write. 

I could not consider Persigny's message, coming as he did 
aight from Paris, in any other light than as a sort of semi- 
cial communication, and it was necessary for me to answer 
avilly but firmly. I believe that I was not wrong in con- 
ering the communication as coming from superior authority 
Paris, though possibly Persigny, in his zeal, may have added 
nothing of his own. He wrote me an answer, in which he 
atty well admitted that Borthwick had faithfully rendered 
3 substance of what had been said to him. I purposely 


omitted to allude to one thing which Persigny had said, which 
was that if I did not adopt a friendly course towards France, I 
should be turned out at the beginning of next session by a 
coalition of Tories and Radicals upon the cry of peace against 
what they would represent a policy calculated to bring about a 
war with France. Other things which I have heard satisfy 
me that Persigny spoke by order and according to orders, and, 
therefore, the Emperor and his ministers ought not to be hurt 
or offended at the answer which it was impossible for me not to 
give. If Persigny had been able to come down here, the dia- 
logue would have been by word of mouth instead of by letter, 
and it would, therefore, have been less formal. But pray assure 
the Emperor that my great wish and that of all my colleagues 
is to maintain the closest relations of friendship and alliance 
with France, and that it will certainly not be our fault if things 
should take a different course. But they must know that con- 
fidence depends upon facts, and not upon words and things 
which have happened, and language which has been held for 
some time past could not fail to inspire distrust as to the future ; 
but that distrust has not been accompanied by the slightest 
feeling of hostility to France, and is purely and entirely a feel* 
ing of a defensive character. 

The Emperor and those about him fancy we are making a 
coalition to attack France. We should be insane to do so. 
What would be the object of such an attack, and what possible 
hopes would anyone have of success ? 

France is an essential element in the balance of power in 
Europe, and, I may say, in the world. All that we want is, 
that France should be content with what she is, and should 
not take up the schemes and policy of the first Napoleon, which 
many things of late lead us to think she has an inclination to 
do. Of course if that system were again to be acted upon, 
it would be resisted now as it was before, but with 'earlier 
success. The seizure of Savoy and Nice and the breach of 
promise towards Switzerland about the cession to the Swiss 
of the neutralised district are matters which cannot be got over 

At Leeds he did not make a political speech, bat 
was there in October to open a mechanics' institute 
and to converse familiarly, as he so well could, about 
the everyday life of his hearers. When one of the 
speakers, in a laboured oration, was enlarging on every 


-man having his own sphere, and that while the mechanic 
-would be out of place as Prime Minister, the Premier 
would fail as a weaver, Lord Palmerston quickly re- 
plied, amid general laughter, ( Oh, my business is not 
to weave, but to unravel ! ' 

There was one confederacy of a totally different 
*kind from any that came across the path of his official 
duties which baffled his ' unravelling ' powers this 
year. When the much-coveted ' blue riband ' of the 
turf seemed just within his grasp, his horse Mainstone — 
third in the betting — unaccountably broke down, with 
strong suspicion of foul play. The entries in his list 
of interviews on the morning of Monday, May 21, are 
striking by their variety : — 

John Day and Professor Spooner about Mainstone : settled 
he should run on Wednesday. — Shaftesbury about Church ap- 
pointments. — Powell, to ask about Mainstone. — Sir Robert 
Peel, ditto. — Bernstorff to read me a despatch. — Sidney Herbert 
about his evidence to be given to-morrow before committee on 
army organisation. — Deputation from Manchester against in- 
tention of the House of Lords to throw out the repeal of the 
-excise duty on paper. 

The Derby Day being the next but one, we may be 
4sure that on this morning the trainer and the veterinary 
were received with even more interest than the Prus- 
sian ambassador and the deputation. In spite of 
a bad report from the stable, Lord Palmerston rode 
•down to Epsom on Wednesday to see Thormanby 
win and his own horse only come in somewhere about 
tenth. It was a great disappointment to him. He 
had never been so near taking the great prize of the 
turf, and he was convinced that if his horse had been 
fairly dealt with, it would at any rate have made a good 
show to the front. Lord Palmerston's connection with 
the turf extended over a long period, commencing in 
1815, with a filly called Mignonette, at Winchester, 
and only ending with his death. He seldom betted, 
but raced from innate love of sport and horses. He 


usually bred his animals himself, and named them 
after his farms. A visit to his three paddocks at 
Broadlands made his favourite Sunday afternoon walk. 
The interest he took in Turf matters, and the assist- 
ance which he gave to those responsible for them, 
were signally recognised when the Jockey Club in 1845 
passed an unanimous resolution that their thanks should 
be offered to him for his invaluable services in revising 
the laws of the Turf, and that he should be requested 
to become an honorary member of the club, having 
been elected unanimously by a suspension of the rules. 
Changing his trainer after this Mainstone affair, and 
feeling very much disgusted at the state of the Turf, 
revealed, as he considered, by the treatment of his 
horse, he had no animal of any merit afterwards except 
Baldwin, 1 which he disposed of shortly before his death 
in the manner shown by the following letter : — 

94 Piccadilly : July 31, 1865. 

My dear Lord Naas, — I have been obliged to throw my 
horse Baldwin out of training, in order to prevent his becoming 
regularly lame. 

I mean to devote the rest of his days to the production of 
good horses, and, if you like to accept him as a stallion for the 
Palmerstown breeding styid, I will gladly make him a present 
to that establishment, on the single condition that if at any 
time you found that he did not suit, he should be returned to 

If you take him, you should send some trusty person to 
Broadlands to give him over to Ireland, and the sooner the 

The session of 1860 offered many occasions on 
which the tact and good humotr of the leader of the 
House of Commons were required. Conspicuous among 
these was the dispute about the paper duties, which 
threatened to disturb the mutual relations of Lords 

1 Baldwin was named by Lord Palmerston after Admiral 8ir 
Baldwin Walker. The Admiralty had despatched a fast steamer to 
£tteh Bir Baldwin back after he had sailed from Plymouth, but it 



and Commons. The Upper House had thrown out, by 
a large majority, the Bill for the repeal of the excise 
duty on paper, and, by so doing, they undoubtedly 
usurped a power which, by the spirit of the Constitution, 
whatever might be its letter, rested solely with the 
Lower House. Lord Palmerston was not inclined to 
allow the misunderstanding to grow into a quarrel. 
He moved for a committee to enquire into precedents, 
and, on its report, proposed three resolutions which 
affirmed that the right of granting aids and supplies is 
in the Commons alone, and that although the Lords 
had exercised on some occasions the power of rejecting 
Bills relating to taxation by negativing the whole, the 
House viewed such acts with peculiar jealousy, and 
reserved in their own hands the power so to frame Bills 
of Supply as to maintain their rights inviolate. He 
urged these resolutions on the acceptance of the House 
with great dexterity and, as it proved, with entire suc- 
cess. His position was difficult. There was indeed no 
case for a resolution at all ; but while he wished to 
build a bridge for the retreat of the Lords, he had two 
colleagues in his Cabinet who were committed far too 
deeply by their expressions of wrath at what they 
termed an outrageous invasion of the liberties of the 
people to permit of their passing the matter over in 
silence. So he had, as a wise and moderate counsellor, 
to vindicate in his speech the rights of the Commons 
while sparing the susceptibilities of the Lords. The 
resolutions were adopted, the question rested for the 
remainder of this session, and the Bill passed the Upper 
House in the next. 

Another matter of smaller moment served to illus- 
trate his happy art of putting things. Mr. Horsman 
had raised a discussion which involved allusions to the 
connection between the Government and the press, and 
insinuated that the social influences of Cambridge 
House helped to sway the political leanings of one of 
the chief organs of public opinion. Lord Palmerston 
answered him as follows : — 


My right honourable friend has stated that he did not know 
what the influence was which drew one of the editors or mana- 
gers of the ' Times 'tome; and if by that statement he means 
to imply a wish on my part to exercise any influence over the 
line of conduct which is pursued in the case of that journal, I 
can only say in answer to that charge, in the words of Mrs. 
Malaprop, that I should be but too glad to plead guilty to the 
soft impeachment, and to know that the insinuation which it 
involves was really founded on fact. If there are influences 
which, as the right honourable gentleman says, have fortunately 
led Mr. Delane to me, they are none other than the influences 
of society. My right honourable friend has observed, in that 
glowing address which he has just delivered, that the contribu- 
tors to the press are the favourites and the ornaments of the 
social circles into which they enter. In that opinion he is, it 
seems to me, perfectly correct. The gentlemen to whom he 
refers are, generally speaking, persons of great attainments and 
information. It is, then, but natural that their society should 
be agreeable. My acquaintance with Mr. Delane is exactly of 
that character. I have had the pleasure of meeting him 
frequently in society, and he has occasionally done me the 
honour to join in society under my roof; that society was, I 
may add, composed of persons of all shades of politics and of 
various pursuits. I need hardly say I feel proud when persons 
so honour me without undertaking any other engagement than 
that which Mr. Delane always makes good — of making them- 
selves agreeable during the time of their stay. 

A tribute paid by the Lord Chancellor to Lord 
Palmerston's conduct of public affairs during this 
session is so forcible and compendious that I here 
insert it. Lord Westbury writes to him in the month 
of August : 

I cannot close this note without expressing to you, with the 
most unfeigned sincerity, my admiration of your masterly 
leadership during this most difficult session. Great knowledge, 
great judgment, great temper and forbearance, infinite skill 
and tact, matchless courtesy, and great oratorical talent, riidng 
with each important occasion, have in a most eminent degree 
marked your conduct of the Government and your leadership 
of the House of Commons. Those who know the secrets of the 
Cabinet must feel that none but you could have kept it together* 


what I esteem most is that happy quality you possess by 
whilst you receive the admiration, you at the same time 
the affection of all around you, 

I We must remember that during all these years the 
jteral party had only a small nominal majority of 
pnty in the House of Commons, and that the Cabinet, 
tfaining statesmen of marked individual importance, 
itained also strong elements of divergence, whether 
matters of finance, of reform, or of foreign affairs. 
rd Westbury was right in thinking that none but 
minister possessing peculiar talent for reconciling, 
nenting, and commanding diverse idiosyncrasies 
lid have overcome such obvious difficulties. 

vol. ix. D D 




Political parties were in a singular jumble at the 
period which we have now reached. The Conserva- 
tives, alarmed at the ' advanced' tendencies of the 
Chancellor of the Exchequer, promised to refrain from 
all attempts to turn out the Liberal Premier, if only he 
would resist ' democratic ' budgets, and keep his hands 
from any violent action against Austria. Needless to 
say that Lord Palmerston was too loyal to enter into 
any such secret understanding. The Radicals, on the 
other hand, hopeless of any effective pressure on their 
part, and impatient of the laggard steps of the Whig 
Cabinet, offered to help the Tories to turn out the 
existing Government, and to give the administration 
which would succeed a two years' lease of power. 
They anticipated that by that time the country would 
be ready for such a Government and such a Eeform 
Bill as they would themselves desire. Needless to say 
that the Conservatives were not so shortsighted as to 
accept such an alliance. The upshot was that Lord 
Palmerston, although with a small nominal majority, 
continued to hold an unassailable position both in the 
House and the country. ^ 

The very ancient and dignified office of Lord War- 
den of the Cinque Ports becoming vacant by the death 
of .Lord Dalhousie in the spring of 1861, the dignity 


was conferred by Her Majesty upon Lord Palmerston. 
It was at first intended that the post should not be 
filled up ; but, on representations being made of the 
historical traditions which attached to it, and of the 
long line of illustrious men who had filled it, including 
during this century both Pitt and Wellington, the 
Premier rightly considered that, unless for some good 
Teason, a link with the past so interesting in its charac- 
ter should not be lightly broken. The ancient residence 
of Walmer Castle still remained to the Lord Warden, 
although his emoluments, save a few droits of Ad- 
miralty, had disappeared. Lord Palmerston's installa- 
tion took place at Dover with pomp and circumstance. 
Under the antiquarian care of the town-clerk all the 
old traditions had been unearthed and rusty ceremonies 
refurbished, and the new Lord Warden was conducted 
to the Bredenstone with due solemnity to take the 
oaths of office at a grand Court of Shepway. Lord 
Palmerston entered into the thing with proper spirit, 
and made an appropriate speech at the inaugural ban- 
quet, in which reminiscences of the past mingled with 
exhortations to the practice of modern patriotism. 

But another penalty attached to the acceptance of 
the Lord Wardenship. It was a € place of profit ' 
{though of small profit) ' under the Crown/ So during 
the Easter recess he had to vacate his seat in Parlia- 
ment, and was compelled to enjoy what the newspapers 
of the day called his ' favourite relaxation, when he had 
nothing else particular to do ' — namely, the being re- 
turned for Tiverton. Of course the redoubtable Eow- 
cliffe was on the watch, and from an open window near 
the hustings upbraided the Premier for his lukewarm- 
ness about reform. c You come to Tiverton to gull the 
people, but you don't gull me. I have given the Whigs 
a long trial, but now I throw them over. Go back to 
Downing Street, and bring in an honest Reform. Bill, 
and let us have no more double shuffle.' At the sound 
of the well-known accents Lord Palmerston came up 
smiling to the front, and, amid the cheers and laughter 

DD 2 


of the crowd, turned his tormentor inside out, and 
then went down, shook hands with him, and gave him a 
receipt for the gout. This Tiverton butcher was a vul- 
gar specimen, eager for notoriety ; yet the spectacle of 
a Prime Minister, at the height of his power and popu- 
larity, giving himself as much pains to answer these 
taunts as if they had come from the Leader of the 
Opposition had its moral. In some countries the man 
would have been ejected, or at least hustled; but in 
England his rights as an elector were recognised both 
by the mob and the minister. 

The great event of this year was, undoubtedly, the 
outbreak of the civil war in America, The English 
Government, though it recognised the Southerners as 
belligerents, proclaimed its neutrality and maintained 
it in spite of many temptations and frequent solicita- 
tions to take a different course. Not only were motions 
to that effect pressed upon them in both Houses of 
Parliament, but similar proposals were made to them 
by the French Government ; but they early recognised 
that, if the war was to cease in any other way than by 
the complete success of the North, it was far better 
that it should so cease owing to a conviction on both 
sides that they could never live again happily as one 
community, than that the termination of hostilities 
should be brought about by the mediation or inter- 
ference of any European Power. The sentiments which 
inspired the Cabinet may be gathered from the tone of 
the following short note, which I insert as contradicting 
the generally received impression of Lord Palmerston's 
hostility to the American Republic. It is quite true 
that he entertained a feeling of contempt, and even of 
dislike, for many of the men who from time to time 
occupied public positions in connection with the United 
States Government. He thought them deficient in 
honesty and offensive in tone — in short, not ' gentlemen/ 
in the sense which is independent of birth and depends 
solely upon character; but for the American people, 
apart from its politicians, he had that admiration and 


regard which his truly English nature would necessarily 
feel for a free and kindred nation. To his correspondent 
who had been urging proposals for our mediation he 
writes: — 

94 PiccadiUy t May 5> 1861. 

My dear Ellice, 1 — The day on which we could succeed in 
putting an end to this unnatural war between the two sections 
•of our North American cousins would be one of the happiest 
of our lives, and. all that is wanting to induce us to take steps* 
for that purpose is a belief that any such steps would lead 
towards the accomplishment of that purpose, and would not do 
more harm than good. The danger is that, in the excited state 
■of men's minds in America, the offer of anyone to interpose 
to arrest their action, and disappoint them of their expected 
triumph, might be resented by both sides ; and that jealousy of 
European, especially of English, interference in their internal 
affairs might make them still more prone to reject our offer as 

There would, moreover, be great difficulty in suggesting any 
basis of arrangement to which both parties could agree, and 
'which it would not be repugnant to English feelings and prin- 
tdples to propose. We could not well mix ourselves up with the 
acknowledgment of slavery and the principle that a slave escap- 
ing to a free soil State should be followed, claimed, and recovered, 
like a horse or an ox. We might possibly propose that the 
North and South should separate amicably ; that they should 
make some boundary line, to be agreed upon, the line of separa- 
tion between them ; and that each confederation should be free 
to make for its own internal affairs and concerns such laws as it 
might think fit — the two confederations entering, however, into 
•certain mutual arrangements as to trade and commerce with 
each other. 

Do you think the time is come for any arrangement of such 
a kind % or is it not in the nature of things and in human 
nature that the wiry edge must be taken off this craving appe- 
tite for conflict in arms before any real and widespread desire 
for peace by mutual concession can be looked for % 

For those who looked ahead the civil war threatened 
an early blow to English interests in the shape of the 
loss of our cotton supply. Lord Palmerston writes to 

1 Bight Hon. Edward Ellice, M.P. 


the President of the Board of Trade, to see if he could 
provide in any manner for the expected deficiency : — 

94 Piccadilly : June 7, 1861. 

My dear Milner Gibson, — It is wise when the weather is 
fine to put one's house in wind and water-tight condition against 
the time when foul weather may come on. The reports from 
our manufacturing districts are at present good ; the mills are 
all working, and the people are in full employment. But we 
must expect a change towards the end of next autumn, and da- 
ring the winter and the spring of next year. The civil war in 
America must infallibly diminish to a great degree our supply 
of cotton, unless, indeed, England and France should, as sug- 
gested by M. Mercier, the French Minister at Washington, 
compel the Northern States to let the cotton come to Europe from 
the South ; but this would almost be tantamount to a war with 
the North, although not perhaps a very formidable thing for 
England and France combined. But even then this year's crop 
must be less plentiful than that of last year. Well, then, has 
the Board of Trade, or has any other department of the Govern- 
ment, any means of procuring or of helping to procure anywhere 
in the wide world a subsidiary supply of cotton 1 As to our 
manufacturers themselves, they will do nothing unless directed 
and pushed on. They are some of the most helpless and short- 
sighted of men. They are like the people who held out their 
dishes and prayed that it might rain plum-puddings. They 
think it is enough to open their mill-gates, and that cotton will 
come of its own accord. They say they have for years been 
looking to India as a source of supply ; but their looks seem to 
have had only the first effect of the eyes of the rattlesnake, viz., 
to paralyse the objects looked at, and as yet it has shown no 
signs of falling into their jaws. The western coast of Africa, 
the eastern coast of Africa, India, Australia, the Fiji Island*, 
Syria, and Egypt, all grow great quantities of cotton, not to 
mention China, and probably Japan. If active measures were 
taken in time to draw from these places such quantities of 
cotton as might be procured, some portion at least of the pro- 
bable falling off of this next year might be made good, and oar 
demand this year would make a better supply spring up for 
future years. I do not know whether you can do anything in, 
this matter ; but it is an important one, and deserves early 


With his care for the preservation of the rights of 
the Ottoman Porte, Lord Palmerston had, of coarse, 
never ceased to keep a watchful eye on the proceedings 
of the French in Syria. He now writes to the British 
Ambassador at Constantinople, and bases on the success 
of his endeavours in that quarter an exhortation to the 
new Sultan to abandon the architects and builders of 
Abdul Mejid for nobler agents and objects more worthy 
of an enlightened ruler. The years which have since 
elapsed have sufficiently shown how vain were the hopes 
of any such change ; but it cannot be too clearly re- 
membered that the keynote of Lord Palmerston's 
Eastern policy at the time of the Crimean War and for 
some time after was a sincere belief in the possibility, 
if not the probability, of the complete regeneration of 
Turkey, if the opportunity were offered to her. He 
died before the experiment could be finally pronounced 
a failure. 

94 Piccadilly: June 26, 1861. 
My dear Bulwer, — I am heartily glad we have got the 
French out of Syria, and a hard job it was to do so. The 
arrangement made for the future government of the Lebanon 
will, I dare say, work sufficiently well to prevent the French 
from having any pretext for returning thither. But the death 
of the late Sultan and the accession of the present one are the 
great and important events of the day, as bearing upon Eastern 
affairs. Abdul Mejid was a good-hearted and weak-headed 
man who was running two horses to the goal of perdition — his 
own life, and that of his empire. Luckily for the empire, his 
own life won the race. If the accounts we have heard of the 
new Sultan are true, we may hope that he will restore Turkey 
to its proper position among the Powers of Europe. If he will 
continue the system of Liberal toleration and progressive in- 
ternal improvement established by his predecessor on paper, and 
in some cases and places carried into execution, and if he will 
apply to his empire the well-regulated economy with which he 
is said to have managed his own private aflairs, he may be able 
to rescue his country from the downfall with which it has lately 
seemed to be threatened. 

" • You will, of course, encourage him to follow such a course, 
and the present Grand Vizier will be a useful instrument for*. 


such a policy. But the Sultan must begin by clearing out the 
Harem, dismissing his architects and builders, and turning off 
his robber ministers. The natural resources of the empire, in- 
tellectual, physical, and material, are great; and, if properly 
brought out and turned to account, would render Turkey a 
powerful and important state. 

Lord Palmerston always entertained a great affec- 
tion for Harrow, the place of his early education* 
Many a time did he ride down in the course of his life 
to revisit the old scenes, and this year he was present 
at an interesting ceremony, for he undertook to lay 
the foundation stone of the School Library, erected in 
honour of Dr. Vaughan, who had recently retired from 
the head-mastership. In spite of the pouring rain 
he went down on horseback, and was received by the 
assembled boys with great enthusiasm. He reminded 
them, in his speech, that the strength of a nation con- 
sists not so much in the number of the people as in the 
character of the men; and then, turning the rain to 
account, went on : — 

We ought to pay due respect to those who form the character 
of the rising generation ; who instruct them that self-control is 
better than indulgence ; who tell them that labour is to be pre- 
ferred to pleasure; and that whereas mere amusements may 
be compared to the southern breezes, which, though pleasant to 
be enjoyed, yet pass away and leave no trace behind them, 
honourable exertion, on the contrary, may be compared to the 
fertilizing shower which, though it may, as you all know at the 
present moment, not be agreeable to those who are exposed to it 
(laughter), yet nevertheless leaves, by enriching and improving 
the soil on which it falls, solid marks behind it by the ample 
and abundant harvest which it helps to create. I must, as a 
Harrow man, be permitted to say that Harrow has held its place 
in public estimation and public service by furnishing men dis- 
tinguished the most in all the careers which they may have 
chosen for their future life. We have named the most dis- 
tinguished in arms. We are proud of one name — a poet, Lord 
Byron — who here imbibed the first elements of that classical 
attainment which afterwards led to his high fame. We may 
boast— I speak now as a Harrow boy — that in the present 


Century f our Harrow boys * have attained the post which I now 
have the honour to hold, and I trust that there are many other 
four Harrow boys who are destined to become distinguished 
men like those to whom I allude. 

After this he rode back in the rain to pass the rest 
of the day and night on the Treasury Bench ; being at 
the time close upon seventy-seven years of age. 

The manner in which from his place on that bench 
he, this session, countermined the workings of an un- 
scrupulous intriguer deserves notice as illustrative of 
his readiness of resource and knowledge of human 
nature. The Government had announced the with- 
drawal of a grant given by the Derby administration 
towards the maintenance of a mail-packet service be- 
tween the port of Galway and the United States. 
Great indignation was excited by this withdrawal in 
those parts of Ireland which had expected to profit by 
the scheme; and a certain Father Daly, armed with 
credentials from influential quarters, came over to 
England, with the avowed design, by means of the 
Irish rote, to put the Government in a minority should 
it refuse to give way. He had an interview with Lord 
Palmerston, and threatened him with this party defec- 
tion on the forthcoming Budget. Lord Palmerston 
merely replied, that he should go straight down to the 
House of Commons and relate exactly what had just 
passed between them. He did so in a manner both 
frank and amusing, and with such effect, that the Irish 
Liberals, even had they secretly nursed any thoughts 
of playing traitor to their party for the sake of local 
emoluments, became ashamed to appear as dancing to 
the wire-pulling of an Irish priest, and the Budget was 

Some of Lord Palmerston's views about contem- 
porary Italian and American affairs are given in the 
following letter : — 

1 Perceval» Goderich, Peel, Aberdeen. 


Broadlands : October 18, 1861. \ 
My dear Russell, — First, as to Rome, I believe you are right 
in not instructing Cowley to make, at present at least, any sug- 
gestion to the Emperor as to a final arrangement of the ques- 
tion about the Pope. We could not suggest any arrangement 
which was not founded on the basis that Rome and its whole 
territory should be evacuated by the French ; that the Pope 
should have no temporal dominion over any part of the people 
of Italy, and that the city of Rome should be the capital of the 
Italian kingdom. But the first of these conditions would at 
once stop the discussion of the other two. Notwithstand- 
ing the affected regret of the Emperor at having been 
led to occupy Rome, it is, I think, pretty clear that he clings 
to the occupation of that central part of Italy, as affording 
him great military and political advantages which he is folly 
determined not at present to give up. He is ready there 
with his army of twenty-five thousand men, capable of 
being increased to any amount, either to take advantage 
of any successful disturbance in the Neapolitan territory, 
or to turn the flank of the Austrians in Venetia, or to 
pass over to Dalmatia, whenever it may suit him to quarrel 
with Austria — and he may very possibly do so next spring. 
But at all events his occupation of Rome, and the protection 
which he thus affords to Antonelli, the Pope, and King Francis 
in their intrigues, retards the consolidation of the unity of Italy 
and holds out to him a still glimmering ray of hope that he may 
succeed in his own scheme of an Italian confederation instead of 
an united kingdom. The course of events will settle the Papal 
question. Peter's pence will at last begin to fail ; and if the 
Pope will only put forth a few more allocutions, even good 
Catholics will become reconciled to the cessation of his temporal 
power. I think you are right in believing that the Emperor 
will turn Austria out of Venetia before he turns himself out of 
Rome ; and there can be little doubt that he remains in Rome 
for the purpose of being more easily able to turn Austria out of 

The arrangement you suggest by which Turkey would sell 
Herzegovina to Italy, and Italy would give it to Austria in ex- 
change for Venetia, would be a very good one, but it would he 
hard to accomplish. Turkey would not easily be persuaded to 
sell Herzegovina, and Austria would not be more disposed 
to take that province in exchange for Venetia, to which she 
foolishly attaches great military importance. I suspect that 


Austria will not give up Venetia till compelled to do so for 
nothing by defeat in war. It might be worth considering 
whether parties concerned might be sounded about some such 
plan — Turkey first, because the first cession would be made by 

As to North America, our best and true policy seems to be 
to go on as we have begun, and to keep quite clear of the con- 
flict between North and South. It is true, as you say, that 
.there have been cases in Europe in which allied Powers have 
said to fighting parties, like the man in the ' Critic/ ' In the 
Queen's name I bid you to drop your swords ; ' but those casea 
are rare and peculiar. The love of quarrelling and fighting is 
inherent in man, and to prevent its indulgence is to impose 
restraints on natural liberty. A state may so shackle its own 
subjects ; but it is an infringement on national independence to- 
restrain other nations. The only excuse would be the danger 
to the interfering parties if the conflict went on ; but in the 
American case this cannot be pleaded by the Powers of Europe. 

I quite agree with you that the want of cotton would not 
justify such a proceeding, unless, indeed, the distress created by 
that want was far more serious than it is likely to be. The 
probability is that some cotton will find its way to us from 
America, and that we shall get a greater supply than usual from 
other quarters. 

The only thing to do seems to be to lie on our oars and to 
give no pretext to the Washingtonians to quarrel with us, while, 
on the other hand, we maintain our rights and those of our 

Towards the end of the year 1861 two events, very 
different in their nature, but alike sudden and startling,, 
highly excited the public mind, I refer to the illness 
and death of the Prince Consort and the seizure of the 
Confederate envoys, on board the British mail-steamer 
' Trent,' which brought us to the verge of a war with, 
the United States. During the simultaneous interval 
of suspense, Lord Palmerston was laid up with an 
attack of gout, the worst in his whole life. No doubt 
his symptoms were aggravated by the anxieties of the 
.moment ; and I remember that both his hands and both 
his feet were completely crippled, and that he was unable 
for a fortnight even to open a letter for himself. Yet 


be never abandoned bis post. Daily communications 
•with tbe pbysicians in attendance at Windsor, urging, 
perbaps witb unnecessary precaution, tbe summoning 
of additional advice, daily communications and inter- 
views with those charged witb the duties of negotiation 
or of preparation for war, showed that tbe spirit was 
not daunted by the pain and prostration of the body. 
He felt the death of the Prince Consort most acutely, 
and looked upon it as an irreparable loss. As to the 
dispute with America, he regarded the despatch of the 
Guards and other troops to Canada before the arrival 
of a reply to our demand for a surrender of the captives 
as the best means of averting war, and so it proved. 
Although by certain organs of the peace party it was 
denounced as an irritating measure, it was no such 
thing, but the one way of showing, without offence to 
the United States Cabinet, that England was in earnest. 
It was only by extraordinary exertions that the troop- 
ships were enabled to reach the St. Lawrence before the 
river navigation was closed by ice. 

During these years there was constant friction at 
work between the two wings of the Liberal party about 
the national expenditure; both parties apparently 
agreeing as to the ends to be attained, but differing as 
to the necessary means. In 1862 Mr. Stansfeld, as 
spokesman of the one section, moved a resolution in the 
House that the national expenditure was capable of re- 
duction without compromising the safety or the legiti- 
mate influence of the country. Lord Palmerston met 
this by a counter-resolution, by which the House, 
acknowledging the obligations of economy, declined to 
bind themselves to any declaration beyond a trust that 
such further reductions might be made as the future 
state of things might warrant. The two following 
letters refer to this question of outlay on the army 
and navy, and to his disinclination to rest upon shifts 
and chances when the position of England was con* 
-cerned : — 


94 Piccadilly : January 8, 1862. 
My dear Mr. Cobden, — I have many apologies to make to you- 
for not having sooner acknowledged the memorandum which you 
sent me some time ago suggesting an understanding and agree- 
ment between the Governments of England and France about 
the number of ships of war which each of the two countries 
should maintain. It would be very delightful if your Utopia 
could be realised, and if the nations of the earth would think 
of nothing but peace and commerce, and would give up quarrel- 
ling and fighting altogether. But unfortunately man is a fight- 
ing and quarrelling animal ; and that this is human nature is 
proved by the fact that republics, where the masses govern, 
are far more quarrelsome, and more addicted to fighting, than 
monarchies, which are governed by comparatively few persons. 
But so long as other nations are animated by these human pas- 
sions, a country like England, wealthy and exposed to attack, 
must by necessity be provided with the means of defence, and 
however expensive these means may be, they are infinitely 
cheaper than the war which they tend to keep off. 

94 Piccadilly : April 29, 1862. 

My dear Gladstone, — I read with much interest, as I came- 
up yesterday by the railway, your able and eloquent speeches at 
Manchester ; but I wish to submit to you some observations 
upon the financial part of the second speech. You seem in that 
speech to make it a reproach to the nation at large that it has 
forced, as you say it has, on the Parliament and the Govern- 
ment the high amount of expenditure which we have at present 
to provide for. Now I do not quite agree with you as to the- 
fact ; but admitting it to be as you state, it seems to me to be 
rather a proof of the superior sagacity of the nation than a 
subject for reproach. 

The main sources of increased expenditure have been army, 
navy, and education. As to education, the increase has arisen 
from the working of a self-acting system. We may not have- 
had the full value of our money, but we have derived great 
advantage from the outlay. 

Now as to the augmentation of our military and naval 
means of defence, I cannot give to the nation, contradistinguished 
from Parliament and Government, the exclusive merit of hav- 
ing demanded them. It appears to me that the merit, as I call 
it, is equally to be shared by the nation, Parliament, and Go- 
vernment. Successive Governments have taken the lead \fj ^co 


posing to Parliaments such estimates as, acting upon their 
responsibility, they thought needful for the public service; 
successive Parliaments have sanctioned those estimates, and the 
nation has ratified those acts by their approval It is, there- 
fore, a mistake to say that this scale of expenditure has been 
forced upon Parliament or upon the Government ; and it is a 
still greater mistake to accuse the nation, as Cobden does, of 
having rushed headlong into extravagance under the impulse 
of panic. Panic there has been none on the part of anybody. 
There was for a long time an apathetic blindness on the part of 
the governed and the governors as to the defensive means of 
the country compared with the offensive means acquired and 
acquiring by other Powers. The country at last awoke from 
its lethargy, not indeed to rush into extravagance and uncalled- 
for exertions, but to make up gradually for former omissions, 
and so far, no doubt, to throw upon a shorter period of time 
expenses which earlier foresight might have spread over a greater 
length of time. The Government, the Parliament, and the 
nation acted in harmonious concert; and if any proof were 
wanting that the nation has been inspired by a deliberate and 
sagacious appreciation of its position with respect to other 
Powers, that proof has been afforded by the long-continued and 
well-sustained sacrifices of time and money which have been 
made by the 160,000 Volunteers, and by those who have con- 
tributed to supply them with requisite funds. 

But have the Government, or rather have both Liberal and 
Conservative Governments, have the Parliament and the nation 
been wrong, and have Bright and Cobden been right % I ven- 
ture to think that the Government, the Parliament, and the 
nation have taken the juster view of what the state of things 

We have on the other side of the Channel a people who, say 
what they may, hate us as a nation from the bottom of their 
hearts, and would make any sacrifice to inflict a deep humilia- 
tion upon England. 

It is natural that this should be. They are eminently vain, 
and their passion is glory in war. They cannot forget or forgive 
Aboukir, Trafalgar, the Peninsula, Waterloo, and St. Helena. 

Increased commercial intercourse may add to the links of 
mutual interest between us and them ; but commercial interest 
is a link that snaps under the pressure of national passions. 
Witness the bitter enmity to England lately freely vented, and 
How with dimculty au^ressed, by those Northern States of 



priea with whom we have had a most extensive commercial 
^course. Well, then, at the head of this neighbouring 

r, who would like nothing so well as a retaliatory blow 
England, we see an able, active, wary, counsel-keeping, 
jever-planning sovereign ; and we see this sovereign organis- 
pn army which, including his reserve, is more than six times 
iter in amount than the whole of our regular forces in our 
islands, and at the same time labouring hard to create a 
f equal to, if not superior to ours. Give him a cause of 
rrel, which any foreign Power may at any time invent or 
te, if so minded ; give him the command of the Channel, which 
nanent or accidental naval superiority might afford him, and 
l calculate if you can — for it would pass my reckoning power 
|o so — the disastrous consequences to the British nation 
ch a landing of an army of from one to two hundred thou- 
1 men would bring with it. Surely even a large yearly 
anditure for army and navy is an economical insurance 
list such a catastrophe. 

To the argument that, ample financial means being 
lessary for national defence, we should devote our 
ncipal attention during peace to the husbanding of 
• resources, he used to reply, that if a war should 
Idenly come, as it might have come, with France 
rat Tahiti, or with America about the ' Trent/ the 
at of ships, troops, guns, and dockyard defences 
old be ill made up for by the fact that some hundreds 
merchants and manufacturers had made large for- 
tes; for that this 'would only be offering to the 
bcher a well-fatted calf instead of a well-armed bull's 
id.' When it was urged that our measures of prepa- 
ion made the French angry, he answered that it was 
only because these preparations rendered us secure 
linst the effects of French anger. * The anger of a 
wer no stronger than ourselves may be borne, with 
jret no doubt, but without alarm. The anger of a 
wer greatly and decidedly stronger must cause ap- 
*hension, and is likely to lead to humiliation or 

He was also very watchful at this time for the se- 
rity of our Canadian frontier, in presence of the strife 


in the United States, and insisted on an increase to our 
regular force in Canada, in order, by so doing, to ' keep 
the United States Government in check, to give spirit 
and confidence to our own people in the provinces, and 
to take the best chance for the continuance of peace. 1 

Towards the end of the session Mr. Cobden made a 
vigorous attack upon Lord Palmerston and his conduct 
of affairs. The Prime Minister was accused of playing 
false to the professions of Reform which had, it was 
alleged, been freely made, if not by himself at any rate 
by many of his followers, when Eadical support was 
wanted to oust the Tories. He was charged with owing 
his retention of power to the support of his political 
adversaries, who had more confidence in him than in 
their own leader. Mr. Cobden asserted that, what with 
fortifications, ironclads, wars in China, and reinforce- 
ments sent in haste in every direction, whether to 
Canada, during the ' Trent ' affair, or elsewhere, Lord 
Palmerston had cost the country one hundred millions, 
which, he maintained, was too heavy a price even for 
such a bargain. Lord Palmerston replied with quiet 
confidence and imperturbable good humour. He left 
the charge of lukewarmness about Eeform as one for 
which the country, and not he, was responsible; but, 
acknowledging the other points, he sarcastically thanked 
Mr. Cobden most warmly for having drawn attention 
to the successful efforts which the Government had 
made for the preservation of the honour, the safety, 
and the interests of the empire. The very acts which 
Mr. Cobden urged as calling for censure he claimed as 
those which deserved the chief approbation of the 
House, which, nothing loath, testified their accord in 
this view. Both sides of the British House of Com- 
mons are always ready to support a Minister whose ex- 
travagance, even if it deserve that name, is in their 
belief honestly intended for the maintenance of the 
national interests, and not merely for the promotion of 
the interests of a class or a party. 

1 To Dxxke of "Newcastle : September 1, 1861. 


The Church patronage which Lord Palmerston ad- 
ministered during his two premierships was so large, 
that the principle on which he declared himself to act, 
and on which, indeed, he consistently did act, is worth 
reading in his own words. I can certainly of my own 
knowledge assert, that the one way in which a clergy- 
man could make it certain that he would not get pre- 
ferment was to commence his letter of application by a 
statement of his political opinions, thus making them 
a ground of claim. Lord Palmerston writes to Lord 
Carlisle, then Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland : — l 

I have never considered ecclesiastical appointments as 
patronage to be given away for grace and favour, and for per- 
sonal or political objects. The choice to be made of persons to 
fill dignities in the Church must have a great influence on many 
important matters ; and I have always endeavoured, in making 
such appointments, to choose the best man I could find, without 
any regard to the wishes of those who may have recommended 
candidates for choice. 

I conclude this chapter with a short but suggestive 
note about Slavery and the Board of Admiralty : — 

August 13, 1862. 

My dear Russell, — No First Lord and no Board of Admi- 
ralty have ever felt any interest in the suppression of the slave 
trade, or taken of their own free will any steps towards its 
accomplishment, and whatever they have done in compliance 
with the wishes of others they have done grudgingly and 
imperfectly. If there was a particularly old slow-going tub in 
the navy, she was sure to be sent to the coast of Africa to try 
to catch the fast-sailing American clippers ; and if there was 
an officer notoriously addicted to drinking, he was sent to a 
station where rum is a deadly poison. 

Things go on better now ; but still there is at the Admiralty 
an invincible aversion to the measures necessary for putting 
down the slave trade. These prejudices are so strong with the 
naval officers of the Board, that the First Lord can hardly be 
expected not to be swayed by them. 

1 Walmer Castle : August 17, 1862. 

yol. n. E E 


For nothing will Lord Palmerston be more honour- 
ably remembered than for his long and successful efforts 
for the suppression of the slave trade and the dis- 
couragement of slavery. From the moment that he was 
called to the Foreign Office in 1830, he entered warmly 
into the subject, and with his whole heart laboured for 
their extinction. He sought to engage all maritime 
states in one great network of treaties for the combined 
annihilation of this nefarious traffic in human beings, 
and to a large extent he succeeded. Some of the Spanish 
and other diplomatists used to be quite surprised at 
what they thought his craze, and were fain to humour 
him on, what tbey considered, so insignificant a matter. 
When action succeeded to negotiation — as, for instance, 
in the decisive blow dealt in 1840 at the Portuguese 
slave-dealers by the destruction of their barracoons on 
the West Coast of Africa — he never allowed any con- 
sideration for the susceptibilities or anger of foreign 
Governments to induce him to halt in his course. On 
the contrary, when the country, sick with deferred hopes 
and aghast at the expense of the necessary squadrons, 
seemed at one moment disposed to flinch, his earnest 
language, conveying lofty aspirations, maintained its 
spirit and strengthened it for renewed efforts. 




As Premier, Lord Palmerston kept a watchful eye over 
the proceedings of all the departments of his Govern- 
ment, and was an unwearied attendant on the sittings 
of the House of Commons, ready at any moment to 
smooth a difficulty or avert a storm* But he was very 
chary of speech ; and when there was nothing particu- 
lar to say he did not attempt to say it. The session 
of 1863 was entirely deficient of any subject of debate, 
domestic or foreign, which could call for any lengthened 
interposition on his part, with the exception of the 
question of Poland ; and while this was being discussed 
he was kept away by an attack of his old enemy the 

The immediate cause of the Polish outbreak was a 
seizure by the Bussian Government of all the young 
men in the cities whom they had reason to believe were 
disaffected, and their enrolment in the ranks of the 
army under the name of a conscription, or ' partial re- 
cruiting/ In fact, to use the words of our ambassador 
at Petersburg, it was ' a simple plan, by a clean sweep 
of the revolutionary youth of Poland, to kidnap the op- 
position and to carry it off to Siberia or the Caucasus.' 
No wonder that this produced resistance. Those who 
escaped took to the woods and organized themselves in 
armed bands. 

E E 2 


Lord Palmerston writes to ' condole ' with the Eus- 
sian ambassador : — 

4 fevrier 1863. 

Mon cher Brunnow, — Je regrette beauooup les insurrec- 
tions qui ont delate* en Pologne et en plusieurs des provinces de 
la Russie, parce que ces mouvements produiront de grands mal- 
heurs dans le pays, et parce que beauooup dliommes qui de- 
vraient se rendre utiles k leur patrie payeront de leur sang, on 
par l'exil, la revolte dont ils ont et6 coupables. 

Mais, quant au Gouvernement russe, je considere ces insur- 
rections comme une juste punition du Ciel, pour les menses 
dont ce Gk>uvernement a et6 coupable, pour preparer pour le 
printemps des revoltes et des insurrections dans Moldo-Wallar 
chie, en Servie et en Bosnie, contre le Sultan. 

Non lex est justior alia, 

Quam necis artifices arte perire sua. 

II est vrai que ces insurrections, ou eclat^es, ou preparers, 
ne menacent de mort ni TEmpire russe ni FEmpire ottoman ; 
la Russie saura mettre ordre dans les provinces et la Porte 
saura apprendre a Couza, au Prince de Servie et aux Bosniacs, 
qu'il est mieux de rester fidele a son Souverain que d'e'eouter les 
conseils subversifs d'un voisin ambitieux. 

Mais, pour le moment, la Russie souffre dans son interieurle 
mal qu'elle a Tintention d'infliger a un voisin inoffensif. Vous 
concevez bien que je parle maintenant des cent mille et plus de 
fusils que le Gouvernement russe a envoyes en Servie et en 
Bonnie par des chemins d6tournes, et avec toutes les precautions 
pour cacher, autant que possible, ce que Ton faisait, et je fais 
allusion aussi a cette nu6e d'agents provocateurs qui, venant de 
la Russie, abondent et travaillent dans les provinces Euro- 
peennes de la Turquie. Si le Prince Gortschakoff 6tait ami 
autant a moi comme vous Testes, je me serais adresse a lui au 
lieu de vous ecrire, mais j'aimerais beau coup qu'il sut Pimpres- 
sion que sa politique a faite sur nous. Mille amities, 


General disgust had been excited throughout Europe 
by the Prussian Government having entered into a con- 
vention with Russia whereby the troops of either were 
authorised to cross the frontier, and pursue the Polish 
insurgents into the territory of the other. The following 
extract from a lettex to \&& "Kii^ of the Belgians shows 


that, however much Lord Palmerston disapproved of 
this active assistance being given by Prussia to one of 
the two contending parties, he was not going in conse- 
quence to allow England to become the cat's-paw of an 
ambitious neighbour : — l 

Your Majesty will have learnt that we declined to fall into 
the trap which the Emperor of the French laid for us by his 
scheme for a violent identical note to be presented to the 
Government of Prussia. 

It was evidently intended that the demands of such a note 
being refused, or evaded, a pretence would thereby have been 
afforded to France for an occupation of the Prussian Rhenish 
provinces, and the French Government have shown much ill- 
humour at the failure of that scheme. But the danger to 
Prussia and to other States is not over. If the Polish Revolu- 
tion goes on, and Prussia is led to take an active part in any 
way against the Poles, the Emperor of the French is sure, 
sooner or later, and upon some pretext or other, to enter the 
Rhenish provinces as a means of coercing Prussia to be neutral. 
Your Majesty would render an essential service to Prussia and 
to Europe if you could exert your influence with the King of 
Prussia to abstain from any action of any kind whatever beyond 
the frontiers of his own territory. 

During the ensuing months the British and Russian 
Governments were engaged in a long correspondence* 
Lord Russell proposed a suspension of arms, and a con- 
ference of the eight Powers to settle the affairs of 
Poland, on the basis of national representation, liberty 
of conscience, establishment of a legal system of re- 
cruiting, and Polish administration of the country. The 
communications which were exchanged were couched 
in friendly, though very frank terms, but they yielded 
no visible fruit, Russia declining to accede to the Eng- 
lish proposals. At one moment England, France, and 
Austria contemplated combining together in order to 
create a semi-detached state in Poland, but as Austria 
soon drew back the project fell to the ground. The 
feeling, however, which the reports of Russian misdeeds 
in Poland, whether exaggerated or not, had excited in 

1 To the King of the Belgians : Match 1&, AftRk. 


the public mind, compelled the organ of the British 
Government to put on record such observations as he 
considered himself entitled to make, England having 
been a party to the Treaty of Vienna whereby Poland 
was secured to Russia. 

In the spring of this year Lord Palmerston went to 
Scotland to deliver an address on being installed a* 
Lord Eector of the University of Glasgow. He also 
visited Edinburgh, where he received the freedom of 
the city and an honorary degree at the University. He 
was received everywhere with marked enthusiasm. As he 
went down the Clyde in a small steamer to Greenock, 
both banks of the river were lined with thousands of 
workmen, who had left their work to catch a glimpse 
of the Premier on the paddlebox, and to cheer him as 
he passed. The captain of the guard-ship, anxious to 
do honour to the occasion, was hindered by the fact 
that a Prime Minister was not recognised in the code of 
naval salutes ; but he found an escape from his dilem- 
ma in the discovery that Lord Palmerston was not only 
First Lord of the Treasury, but also Lord Warden of the 
Cinque Ports, for which great officer a salute of nineteen 
guns was prescribed — an apt instance of the minor 
anomalies of the Constitution under which we live. 

Before the end of the Glasgow visit an incident oc- 
curred which illustrates the fun and simplicity that 
characterised Lord Palmerston to the end of his life. 
A number of gentlemen had confederated themselves 
together under the title of the ' Gaiter ' Club, with 
power to add to their number. This club had no local 
habitation, but only a name. Its objects, beyond a 
mild pedestrianism, were left undefined, but embraced 
all that could be comprised under the mysterious, yet 
far-reaching head of ' gaiterdom.' This body was about 
to entertain at a breakfast one of their number on his 
return from China, namely, that distinguished officer 
Admiral Sir James Hope, and they determined to profit 
by the opportunity to invite Lord Palmerston to become 
a 'Gaiter/ He entered with becoming zest into the 


Scotch humour of the thing, and in acknowledging the 
honour conferred upon him spoke without rising (every 
Gaiter being bound to speak sitting), and with appro- 
priate brevity, 'that whether the gaiters which the 
members wore were long or short, of which he was 
ignorant, of this he was quite sure, that his memory of 
that day would be as long as they could possibly desire. 9 
It had devolved upon Dr. Norman M'Leod, one of the 
Queen's chaplains, and also chaplain to the club, to 
propose that the new member should be received. Those 
who remember his rich vein of humour, and the solemn 
fun which he kept ready for appropriate occasions, can 
picture for themselves the manner in which he spoke as 
follows: That he had been lately staying at Balmoral ; 
that he had taken the opportunity of informing Her 
Majesty that it was contemplated by the gentlemen he 
now had the honour of addressing to make Lord Pal- 
merston a ' Gaiter ; ' and that it was only due to Her 
Majesty that, before so grave a step was taken, she 
should be asked for Her gracious permission. That 
Her Majesty had, after much consideration, replied, that 
although, no doubt, it was a dangerous thing for any 
subject to be both Prime Minister and a ' Gaiter/ still, 
considering Lord Palmerston's great services, and, above 
all, his age and experience, which would preserve him 
from any abuse of the power conferred upon him, she 
would, in his favour, waive her objections. The party 
had broken up laughing, when it was discovered that a 
' Times ' reporter had been present the whole time, and 
it was feared that he might, perhaps, be a Scotchman 
who had neither undergone operation by a surgeon, nor 
milder treatment by a ' Gaiter,' in order to admit the 
joke. Dr. M'Leod had really just come from Balmoral, 
and in panic terror lest all he had said might appear in 
the next day's ' Times,' he rushed from the room, called 
a cab, and hurried to the railway in time to catch the 
reporter before his parcel left. No doubt the precaution 
was unnecessary, but the witty chaplain's agony of mind 
was none the less diverting. 


At Edinburgh Lord Palmerston climbed to the top 
of Arthur's Seat, and wrote to his brother-in-law that 
he really felt very little more difficulty in so doing than 
when he used to mount it daily sixty years before* The 
past was also recalled to him by a visit which he paid 
to an old woman named Peggie Forbes, who had been 
servant at Dugald Stewart's when he was studying 
there in 1801. She produced an old box of tools, which 
she had preserved all these years because it had been 
the property of ' young Maister Henry.' 

The French Emperor now sent letters to the different 
sovereigns of Europe, proposing the assembling of a 
Congress, and suggesting Paris as the place of meet- 
ing. ' It is on the Treaty of Vienna/ he said, * that now 
reposes the political edifice of Europe, and yet it is 
crumbling away on all sides. 9 The British Government 
declined the invitation. Some of Lord Palmerston's 
remarks upon it are contained in the following letter : — x 

94 Piccadilly : November 15, 1863. 
Sire, — The subject to which Your Majesty's letter relates is 
one of very great importance and deserving of mature conside- 
ration. Our answer to the Emperor's proposal has been, in 
substance, that we do not admit that the Treaties of Vienna 
have ceased to be in force, inasmuch as, on the contrary, they 
are still the basis of the existing arrangements of Europe; 
that, with regard to the proposed Congress, before we can come 
to any decision about it, we should like to know what subjects 
it is to discuss, and what power it is to possess to give effect to 
its decisions. 

My own impression is that the Congress will never meet, 
and that the Emperor has no expectation that it should meet. 

The truth is that the assembling of a Congress is not a 
measure applicable to the present state of Europe. 

In 1815 a Congress was a necessity. France had overrun 
all Europe, had overthrown almost all the former territorial 
arrangements, and had established a new order of things. Then 
came the returning tide of the Allied Armies overturning 
everything which France had created, and establishing, for the 
moment, military occupation of the greater part of Europe. It 

1 To the King of the Belgians. 


tvas absolutely necessary to determine to whom, and in what 
portions, and on what conditions, the vast regions reconquered 
from Prance should be thenceforward possessed. The Powers 
whose armies had made this reconquest were the natural and 
indeed the only arbiters ; and they had, by their armies, the 
means of carrying their decisions into effect. 

Nothing of the kind exists in the present state of Europe. 
There are no doubts as to who is the owner of any piece of 
territory, and there are not even any boundary questions in 

The functions of a Congress, if now to be assembled, might 
be twofold, and would bear either on the past or on the future, 
or on both. Drouyn says that the Congress might take up the 
treaties of 1815, go through them article by article; strike out 
whatever has been repealed or set aside, and re-enact the 
remainder as the Treaty of 1863-64, the name of which would 
«be less disagreeable to France than that of the Treaty of 1815, 
which brings to mind Waterloo and St. Helena. This may be 
s. natural feeling for France ; but it is no good reason why all 
the rest of Europe should meet round a table to please the 
French nation ; and those who hold their estates under a good 
title, now nearly half a century old, might not be particularly 
'desirous of having it brought under discussion with all the alte- 
rations which good-natured neighbours might wish to suggest 
in their boundaries. 

No doubt there have been some not unimportant changes 
made in the territorial arrangements of Europe established by 
the Treaty of 1815 ; but some of these were made regularly by 
treaty at the time, and the others, not so made, some of the 
parties to the Congress might not like to sanction by treaty 

Chief among the first class is the separation of Belgium 
from Holland; but that was solemnly sanctioned by negotia- 
tions the length of which I cannot easily forget, and by a treaty 
between the five Powers and Holland and the German Diet. 
That transaction requires no confirmation. Chief among the 
second class was the absorption of Cracow by Austria without 
any treaty sanction; and to that transaction the British 
Ck>vernment, which protested against it at the time, would not 
he greatly desirous of giving retrospective sanction by treaty 
aow. Then come the cession of Lombardy to Italy, and of 
Savoy and Nice to France. These were legally made by the 
rightful owners of the ceded territory, and no confirmation can 


be required. There was indeed, in the case of Savoy, an 
omission to attach to the territory as conveyed to France the 
condition of neutrality as to Chablais and Faucigny, subject to 
which the King of Sardinia held Savoy ; but it may be doubted 
whether France would consent to undertake that condition; 
and its real value, either for Switzerland or Italy, might, after 
all, be trifling. Then comes the absorption into the kingdom 
of Italy of Tuscany, Parma, Modena, Emilia, Naples, and 
Sicily. These were all violations of the Treaty of Vienna, 
done without treaty sanction ; but they were the will of the 
people of those countries. Those transactions have been 
virtually sanctioned by all the Powers who have acknowledged 
the King of Italy ; and if Victor Emmanuel is wise, he would 
be content with leaving those matters as they are, the more 
especially because if a new European treaty were to describe 
the kingdom of Italy as it now is, that treaty would be a virtual 
renunciation by the King of Italy to any claim to Venetia and 
Rome. On the other hand, Austria and the Pope would hardly 
be prepared to give their formal sanction to the acquisitions 
made by the Italian kingdom. 

As to the past, therefore, the functions of the Congress 
would either be unnecessary or barred by insurmountable 

But then as to the future 1 Would the Congress have to 
range over the wide and almost endless extent of proposed and 
possible changes, or would it have to confine itself to questions 
now practically pending 1 There are but two such questions : 
the one relating to Poland, the other to the difference between 
the German Confederation and Denmark about Holstein and 
Lauenburg and about Sleswig. As to Poland, would Kussia be 
more likely to yield in a Congress than she has shown herself 
to be in a negotiation? I much doubt it. And as to the 
question between Germany and Denmark, a smaller machinery 
than a European Congress might surely be sufficient to solve 
that question. 

But if the Congress were to enter upon the wide field of 
proposed and possible changes of territory, what squabbles and 
animosities would ensue ! Russia would ask to get back all she 
lost by the Treaty of Paris ; Italy would ask for Venetia and 
Home ; France would plead geography for the frontier of the 
Rhine ; Austria would show how advantageous it would be to 
Turkey to transfer to Austria Bosnia or Moldo-Wallachia; 
Greece would have a word to say about Thessaly and Epiras; 


Spain would wonder how England could think of retaining 
Gibraltar ; Denmark would say that Sleswig is geographically 
part of Jutland, and that, as Jutland is an integral part of" 
Denmark, so ought Sleswig to be so too ; Sweden would claim 
Finland ; and some of the greater German states would strongly 
urge the expediency of mediatizing a score of the smaller 

If the members of the Congress should be unanimous in 
agreeing to any of these proposals, of course there would be no 
difficulty in carrying a unanimous decision into effect ; but if a 
majority were one way, and a minority, however small, the 
other way, that minority including the party by which a con- 
cession was to be made, is it intended that force should be used, 
or is the Congress to remain powerless to execute its own 

In the face of all these difficulties, my humble opinion is 
that no Congress will meet ; and I shall be glad to think that 
the Emperor will have mended his position at home by making 
the proposal, while its failure will have saved Europe from 
some danger and much embarrassment. 

Lady Palmerston desires me to tender to your Majesty her 
sincere thanks for your condescending message; and we both 
are greatly delighted at the prospect which your Majesty's - 
letter holds out to us of the possibility of having, in the course 
of the winter, the honour of receiving your Majesty at Broad- 

And a fortnight later he writes to Lord Russell : — * 

The state of Europe in 1815 was wholly different from 
what it is now. At that time the success of French arms had 
swept away most of the territorial boundaries and separate 
sovereignties which existed before 1792. The tide of conquest 
which at first ran from west to east, then returned back from east 
to west, and swept away almost all that France had established. 
Europe was a political waste, and required the action of a 
body of inclosure commissioners to allot the lands, and to give 
holding titles. This was done at Vienna in 1814 and 1815. 
But nothing of the kind exists in 1863, and nobody wants an 
improved title to any possession except those who ought not to 
get it ; as, for instance, Russia to the kingdom of Poland, 
Austria to Cracow, France to Savoy without neutrality, and. 
the Pope to what he holds and as much as he could get back.. 

1 December 2, 1863. 


It is quite certain that the deliberations of a Congress would 
•consist of demands and pretensions put forward by some and 
resolutely resisted by others, and that, there being no supreme 
authority in such an assembly to enforce the opinions or 
decisions of the majority, the Congress would separate leaving 
many of the members on worse terms with each other than 
when they met. 

I think it seems pretty clear that, among other schemes 
which the Emperor had for the Congress, there was a proposal 
that there should be given to the Pope a European guarantee 
for his unmolested possession of the territory now held for him 
by the French troops, which then might have been withdrawn. 
France and all the Catholic Powers would willingly have joined 
in such an arrangement, and Russia might have done so out of 
complaisance to France. Italy would have been embarrassed, 
but might have been overruled. We should have been placed 
in a disagreeable dilemma, having either to refuse and to take 
•openly a position hostile to the Pope and distasteful to our 
Catholic fellow-subjects, or to give our formal sanction and 
guarantee to the permanence of the temporal power of the Pope, 
against which we have not hesitated to declare our opinion. 

This, however, was probably only one of the traps laid by Na- 
poleon for the silly birds he was trying to lure into his decoy. 

Several of the other great Powers also declining the 
Congress, the project fell through. 

An account of the intricate proceedings connected 
with the Sleswig-Holstein question cannot come within 
either the scope or the space of this book ; but the part 
which Lord Palmerston's Government took in the matter 
must be briefly narrated. 

The real dispute between Denmark and Germany 
dated from the year 1848, when an insurrectionary 
party in the former declared their grievances and 
appealed to Germany for aid in establishing the union 
of Holstein and Sleswig with a constitutional exist- 
ence separate from the rest of the monarchy. Ger- 
many assisted the insurrection, and at the Peace of 
Berlin in 1850, although nothing was stipulated, it 
ivas understood that the Danish Monarchy was to be 
reconstructed with a view to satisfying the wishes of 


leswig-Holsteiners. Negotiations followed, which, 

T as Sleswig was concerned, were of an interna- 

1 character, and not merely between Denmark 

the Germanic Diet. It was on the interpretation 

fulfilment of the engagements contracted by Den- 

: as the result of these negotiations that the dis- 

with Germany turned, which, while at its height, 

ned a new and more complicated aspect by the 

en death of the King of Denmark. In conformity 

the Treaty of London, 1852, Prince Christian as- 

ed the Danish throne, including that of the Duchies, 

ing Christian IX. ; but the Duke of Augustenburg, 

mgh his father had renounced for himself and his 

ly, insisted on being recognised as Duke of Sleswig- 

tein. Some of the smaller German states, in spite 

& treaty to which many of them had acceded, were 

>sed to go with him on the ground that the treaty 

$52 was not binding unless the other engagements 

;ed to have been entered into by the Crown of Den- 

c at an antecedent time and upon another subject 

i also fulfilled. To state such a proposition was to 

he it; and the British Government had common 

3 and common justice on their side when they urged 

every consideration of honour and good faith de- 

ded the acknowledgment of King Christian as King 

e of all the territories which were under the sway 

is predecessor, and that there would then be a 

onsible sovereign from whom might be claimed the 

Iment of any and every engagement taken by the 

King and not made good. The German Diet, how- 

, decreed a federal execution in Holstein — that is to 

an administration of the Government by commis- 

ers — and, though this was nominally done only in 

interests of the Holsteiners, it was undisguised 

rvention in behalf of the Duke of Augustenburg, 

made his appearance at Kiel, and was greeted as 

rightful Duke. The close of the year saw the 

tish and German troops confronting one another on 

opposite banks of the Eider. 


Austria and Prussia were at first inclined firmly to 
abide by the Treaty of London ; but the pressure of the 
Diet acting upon their mutual jealousies, and the fear 
of each lest it should jeopardise its position in Germany, 
combined to drive them along the path of aggression. 
The first to suffer was the Diet itself; for the matter 
was taken out of their control, and a combined Austrian 
and Prussian force advanced through Holstein into 
Sleswig. On February 2 the Danes evacuated the 
Dannewerke, on which so much reliance had been 
placed, and fell back upon Diippel. Meanwhile, as 
might have been expected, there had sprung up in 
England a strong feeling of indignation at the violence 
offered to little Denmark by tie two great military 
powers. It was suggested that Prance and G reat Britain 
should offer their mediation on the basis of the integrity 
of the Danish monarchy and the engagements of 1851-52; 
and that, if such mediation were refused by Austria and 
Prussia, England should despatch a squadron to Copen- 
hagen, and France a corps d'arm£e to the Bhenisk 
frontier of Prussia. The following letter shows what 
Lord-Palmerston said about this proposal : — 

94 Piccadilly : February 13, 1864. 

My dear Russell, — I share fully your indignation. The 
conduct of Austria and Prussia is discreditably bad, and one or 
both of them will suffer for it before these matters are settled 
I rather doubt, however, the expediency of taking at the present 
moment the steps proposed. The French Government would 
probably decline it, unless tempted by the suggestion that they 
should place an armed force on the Rhenish frontier in the 
event of a refusal by Austria and Prussia — which refusal we 
ought to reckon upon as nearly certain. 

The objections which might be urged against the measures 
suggested* as the consequences of the refused of Austria and 
Prussia-may be stated to be : First, that we could not for many 
weeks to come send a squadron to the Baltic ; and that such a 
step would not have much effect upon the Germans unless it 
were understood to be a first step towards something more; 
and I doubt whether the Cabinet or the country are as yet 
prepared for active interference. The truth is, that to enter 


. military conflict with all Germany on continental ground 
1 be a serious undertaking. If Sweden and Denmark were 
dy co-operating with us, our 20,000 men might do a good 
but Austria and Prussia could bring 200,000 or 300,000 
bhe field, and would be joined by the smaller German 


acondly, though it is very useful to remind the Austrians 
he Prussians privately of the danger they are running at 
— Austria in Italy, Hungary and Galicia ; Prussia in her 
ish provinces — yet it might not be advisable nor for our 
interest to suggest to France an attack upon the Prussian 
tish territory. It would serve Prussia right if such an 
k were made ; and if Prussia remains in the wrong we 
L not take part with her against France. But the conquest 
at territory by France would be an evil for us, and. would 
usly affect the position of Holland and Belgium. On the 
e, I should say that it would be best for us to wait awhile 
•e taking any strong step in these matters. 

The English Government was, in fact, not only 
tpered, but fettered by the refusal of Eussia and 
nee to join heartily with her. Eussia acted, it may 
apposed, from the same motives which have hitherto 
fcys kept her from breaking with Prussia ; France 
bly, no doubt, from pique at our refusal the previous 
r to agree to her Congress. It might, of course, 
e been very different could England have consented 
?rench conquest on the Ehine as the price to be paid 
French assistance. 

Lord Palmerston, however, was anxious to do all 
could for Denmark within the bounds of what was 
besmanlike and possible. He wrote to the First 
:d of the Admiralty : — l 

I own I quite agree with Russell, that our squadron ought 
p to Copenhagen as soon as the season will permit, and that 
ught to have orders to prevent any invasion of, or attack 
>n Zealand and Copenhagen. It is not unlikely that Austria 
I Prussia, reckoning upon our passive attitude, contemplate 
occupation of Copenhagen, and think to imitate what the 
t Napoleon did at Vienna and Berlin, and mean to dictate 

* To the Duke of Somerset : February 20, 1864. 


at the Danish capital their own terms of peace. We should be 
laughed at if we stood by and allowed this to be done. 

The Prussians took Diippel in April, and soon after 
a solitary gleam of sunshine for the Danes broke the 
monotonous gloom of their reverses, and they gained a 
naval success against the Austrians off Heligoland. The 
two following letters tell Lord Palmerston's intended 
action in case of the Austrian Government proposing 
to reinforce their fleet in the Baltic : — 

94 Piccadilly : May 1, 1864. 
My dear Russell, — I felt so little satisfied with the decision 
of the Cabinet on Saturday, that I determined to make a notch 
off my own bat, and accordingly I wrote this morning to 
Apponyi, asking him to come here and give me half an hour's 
conversation. He came accordingly. I said I wished to have 
some friendly and unreserved conversation with him, not as 
between an English minister and the Austrian ambassador, but 
as between Palmernton and Apponyi ; that what I was going 
to say related to serious matters ; but I begged that nothing I 
might say should be looked upon as a threat, but only as a frank 
explanation between friends on matters which might lead to 
disagreements, and with regard to which, unless timely explana- 
tion were given as to possible consequences of certain things, 
a reproach might afterwards be made that timely explanation 
might have averted disagreeable results. I said that we have 
from the beginning taken a deep interest in favour of Denmark 
— not from family ties, which have little influence on English 
policy, and sometimes act unfavourably — but, first, that we 
have thought from the beginning that Denmark has been 
harshly and unjustly treated; and, secondly, we deem the 
integrity and independence of the State which commands the 
entrance to the Baltic objects of interest to England. That we 
abstained from taking the field in defence of Denmark for many 
reasons — from the season of the year; from the smallnees of 
our army, and the great risk of failure in a struggle with all 
Germany by land. That with regard to operations by sea, the 
positions would be reversed : we are strong, Germany is weak; 
and the German ports in the Baltic, North Sea, and Adriatic 
would be greatly at our command. Speaking for myBelf per- 
sonally, and for nobody else, I must frankly tell h\m that, if an 
Austrian squadron ^rere to pass along our coasts and ports, and 


go into the Baltic to help in any way the German operations 
against Denmark, I should look upon it as an affront and insult 
to England. That I could not, and would not stand such a 
thing; and that, unless in such case a superior British squadron 
were to follow, with such orders for acting as the case might 
require, I would not continue to hold my present position ; and 
such a case would probably lead to collision — that is, war ; and 
in my opinion Germany, and especially Austria, would be the 
sufferer in such a war. I should deeply regret such a result, 
because it is the wish of England to be well with Austria ; but 
I am confident that I should be borne out by public opinion. I 
again begged that he would not consider this communication as 
•a threat, but simply as a friendly reminder of consequences 
'which might follow a possible course of action. 

Apponyi, having listened with great attention to what I 
said, replied that the considerations which I had pointed out 
were not new to his mind ; that they had been forcibly dwelt 
upon, among other persons, by the King of the Belgians. 
Tliat he was quite aware that, if the Austrian ships entered 
the Baltic, an English squadron would follow them ; that in all 
probability one of two things would happen — either that the 
Austrian squadron would be destroyed, or that it would be 
compelled by orders from the English admiral to leave the 
Baltic. Thus they would run the risk of a catastrophe or a 
humiliation, and they did not wish for either. That, therefore, 
"whatever may have been said by Rechberg in his note, we 
might be sure that the Austrian squadron will not enter the 
Baltic. This is satisfactory, as far as Apponyi may be con- 
4sidered the organ of the Austrian Government; but I think 
we ought to have something more positive in writing than we 
have got. 

I shall state to the Cabinet to-morrow the substance of my 
<»nversation with Apponyi. 

At the same time lie wrote to the First Lord of the 
Admiralty : — 

May 4, 1864. 
My dear Somerset, — It seems to me that we ought to insist 
that no Austrian ships of war shall at any time, or under any 
-circumstances during the war, enter the Baltic. We have never 
-declared ourselves neutral in this war : we have declined, for 
reasons of our own, to take a part in it ; but we have done our 
lyest to help the Danes by diplomatic interference. 


The reasons which opposed military interference on our 
part do not apply to naval aid ; and, so far as forbidding the 
Austrians to enter the Baltic at any time during the war, we 
are rendering valuable aid to the Danes, without any great 
effort to ourselves. 

I should be much disposed to allow the Danes to have their 
ronclad. I am satisfied that a manifestation of good -will on 
our part towards the Danes must contribute much to make the 
Germans more reasonable in negotiation. They have been 
encouraged hitherto by a belief that nothing would induce us 
to interfere ; and this belief has been much strengthened, un- 
fortunately, by letters and language received in England. 

In the meantime the British Government were 
making active exertions, by a conference of the Great 
Powers, to put a stop to the further prosecution of the 
war ; and after much trouble they persuaded the belli- 
gerents to come into such a conference to be held in 
London. It met on Afwil 25, and, after proclaiming 
an armistice, proceeded to "business. But no agreement 
could be arrived at as to the future frontier between 
Denmark and the Duchies. The victorious Germans 
were exacting; the desperate Danes were obstinate; 
and after sitting for two months the conference broke 
up without any result of their labours. On June 24 
an informal application was made by our Government 
to the French Emperor, again seeking for his active 
alliance to defend Denmark. Louis Napoleon unhesi- 
tatingly declined giving any such assistance. He was 
not inclined to incur the cost and risk of a war with 
Austria and Germany, without the prospect of compen- 
sation on the banks of the Rhine. He showed at the 
same time the strongest desire that England should 
undertake the task, promising any amount of * moral* 
support. It is clear that he had hopes that, should 
such a war spread, and naval operations begin in the 
Adriatic, it would turn to his advantage in his cherished 
object of procuring the freedom of Venetia. He urged 
upon the British Government that, England having no 
frontiers to be concerned about, it was for her to stand 
forward as the champion of the Danes. But with do 


ally save Sweden the Cabinet did not think this country 
bound to enter the lists, when the independent existence 
of the Danish monarchy was not at stake, but only its 
rights and dominion over the provinces in dispute. 
The peremptory refusal of France caused the abandon- 
ment of the plans which England had conceived, and 
no renewed proposal for active assistance was made to 
Russia. Had Great Britain, in alliance with France 
and Russia, succeeded in arresting the proceedings of 
the German Powers, there can be but little doubt that 
she would have made radical reforms by Denmark in 
her administration of the subject provinces a sine qua 
non. If, however, she had single-handed defended 
Denmark by arms she would have been looked upon as 
the upholder of Danish policy towards the Duchies in 
its entirety — a policy which was at total variance with 
the principles by which she had been hitherto guided ; 
for though the accounts of Danish oppression might 
have been exaggerated, there was no doubt that the 
Duchies had good cause for complaint. Hostilities 
were quickly renewed, and Denmark was compelled to 
sign a peace at Vienna, by which she finally surren- 
dered to Germany the Duchies of Sleswig, Holstein, and 

Parliament now intervened to call Ministers to ac- 
count for their conduct of these affairs. During the 
whole of the session there had been frequent interpel- 
lations and fragmentary debates upon this Dano-German 
question ; but in the beginning of July a simultaneous 
attack was made in both Houses upon the policy of the 
Government. In the House of Lords the resolution 
moved by Lord Malmesbury was carried by a majority 
of nine, and in the House of Commons Mr. Disraeli 
proposed a similar resolution. He asked the House to 
join with him in expressing the opinion that the course 
pursued by Her Majesty's Government had ' lowered 
the just influence of this country in the councils of 
Europe, and thereby diminished the securities for peace.' 
This was a distinct vote of censure, and was accepted 

F F 2 


as such. The debate, which lasted for four nights, 
aroused much public interest, because the strength of 
parties was pretty nearly equal, and on the result of the 
vote depended the continuance or retirement of Lord 
Palmerston's administration. Each afternoon, as Lord 
Palmerston went down to the House, he was cheered by 
the crowd assembled in Palace Yard. He spoke on the 
last night. As the successful winding up of a great 
party debate, involving the fate of a Ministry, his speech 
on this occasion was his last triumph, and showed that 
though he spoke at the end of a night of long and 
weary sitting, his old vigour and canning of fence had 
not deserted him. He had, in truth, a difficult task. 
There had been a conspicuous failure; of that much 
there could be no doubt. Allies, colleagues, and cir- 
cumstances had proved adverse; yet the excuses for 
failure could not publicly be laid on any of them. So, 
with the exception of a dexterous allusion to the words 
of the resolution as * a gratuitous libel upon the country 
by a great party who hoped to rule it,' he did not detain 
the House long on the points immediately at issue, but, 
dropping the Danish matter altogether, went straight 
into a history of the financial triumphs of his Govern- 
ment. What has this to do with the question P asked 
impatient Tories. But it had all to do with the party 
question, for it decided the votes of doubting men, who, 
caring little about Sleswig-Holstein, cared a great deal 
about English finance. Anyhow it commanded success, 
for the Government got a majority of eighteen, and thus 
renewed their lease of power. Both inside the House 
of Commons and outside in Westminster Hall the ex- 
citement and cheering about the result was immense. 

To the King of the Belgians Lord Palmerston shortly 
afterwards opens his mind :— 

94 Piccadilly : August 28, 1864. 

Sire, — I have many apologies to make to your Majesty for 

not having sooner thanked you for your letter of the 15th June. 

We were at that time in the midst of an engrossing session of 

Parliament, and t\v& uii^a^sl ro*cta&\i \K&rc^a Denmark and 


Germany was still undecided, though with little hope that 
right could prevail over might. Ihe Danish Government, 
both under the late and under the present King, undoubtedly 
committed many mistakes, both of commission and omission, 
and they showed throughout these affairs, from beginning to 
end, that inaptitude to deal with great concerns which might, 
perhaps, have been expected from a nation shut up in a remote 
corner of Europe, and not mixed up or practised with the 
general politics of the world. It was, however, an unworthy 
abuse of power by Austria and Prussia to take advantage of 
their superior enlightenment and strength to crush an antagonist 
utterly incapable of successful resistance; and the events of 
this Danish war do not form a page in German history which 
any honourable or generous German hereafter will look back 
upon without a blush. I wish that France and Russia had 
consented to join with us in giving a different direction to those 
affairs ; and I am convinced that words from three such Powers 
would have been sufficient without a recourse to blows. One 
consequence is clear and certain, namely, that if our good friend 
and neighbour at Paris were to take it into his head to deprive 
Prussia of her Rhenish provinces, not a finger in England would 
be stirred, nor a voice raised, nor a man nor a shilling voted to 
resist such retribution upon the Prussian monarch ; and when 
France and Italy shall be prepared to deliver Venetia from the 
Austrian yoke, the joy with which the success of such an under- 
taking will be hailed throughout England will be doubled by 
the recollection of Holstein, Lauenburg, Sleswig, and Jutland. 

He went to the North after the session, visiting 
Bradford, where he had a very cordial reception, and 
afterwards proceeding to Hereford, to uncover the statue 
erected in memory of Sir George Lewis, The enthu- 
siasm with which he was received drew the following 
from Lord Eussell : — * 

Let me congratulate you on the reception you have met 
everywhere since the prorogation. It is clear your popularity 
is a plant of hardy growth % and deep roots, as the real embar- 
rassments of the Danish question have not shaken it. I still 
believe that with a less timid cabinet we might have been able 
to deter Austria from the Danish war, and shown that it was 
in our power ' pads imponere morem.' But the risk was some- 

1 Sept. 8, 1864. 


thing, and the course pursued justifiable, though not so justi- 
fiable, though not so splendid as one could have wished. 

In reply to this note of congratulation from the 
Foreign Secretary, Lord Palmerston writes as fol- 
lows : — l 

Many thanks for what you say about my August peregrina- 
tions ; they were not sought for by me, but they were successful, 
not simply as regards myself, but as relates to the Government; 
and I may safely affirm that our general conduct has been 
approved by the country, and especially the management of our 
foreign affairs, notwithstanding the run made against us on that 
point in Parliament. You say that with less timidity around 
us we might probably have kept Austria quiet in the Danish 
affair. Perhaps we might ; but then we had no equal pull upon 
Prussia, and she would have rallied all the smaller German 
Powers round her, and we should equally have failed in saving 

As to Cabinets, if we had colleagues like those who sat in 
Pitt's Cabinet, such as Westmoreland and others, or such men 
as those who were with Peel, like Goulburne and Hardinge, 
you and I might have our own way on most things ; but when, 
as is now the case, able men fill every department, such men 
will have opinions, and hold to them ; but unfortunately they 
are often too busy with their own department to follow up 
foreign questions so as to be fully masters of them, and their 
conclusions are generally on the timid side of what might be 
the best. 

Before going to Bradford he went with Lady Palmer- 
ston to visit her estates in Northamptonshire, and to 
assist her at Towcester to cut the first sod of a railway 
from Northampton to Stratford-on-Avon. Of course he 
was well received; and the county member,* in his 
speech at the banquet, very happily hit off the popular 
sentiment about the Premier, illustrating as follows 
the way in which his personal influence buoyed up the 
Ministry, and the exceptional position which he held 
with all parties in the state : — 

The noble lord and his Ministry seem to be always engaged 
in the game of chuck-farthing, and it is invariably with * Heads 

1 To Lord Russell : September 11, 1864. 
* Mr., now Sir Bainald, Knightley. 


I win, tails you lose.' (Cheers and laughter.) Whenever it 
comes up ' head/ the noble Viscount very properly has all the 
credit ; when it comes up ' tail,' the rest of the ministers get 
the blame. I do not mean to say that the noble Yiscount is 
guilty of unfair play, but the people, it is evident, are deter- 
mined to give him all the halfpence, and the rest of the Ministry 
all the kicks. (Great laughter.) 

His own speech on this occasion is an instance of 
how genially he could touch the veriest commonplace. 
It was after dinner, and his topic was the advantages 
of railways. Instead of giving a laboured dissertation 
on steam and civilisation, he brought home to the 
country squires, in the following words, what they 
would gain by a new railroad : — 

In former times a gentleman asked his friend in London to 
come down to him in the country, and the friend came with 
things to last him a fortnight or three weeks, and he took, per- 
haps, a week on the journey. Now, if a friend meets another 
in St. James's Street and says, ' I shall have some good shooting 
next week ; will you come down to me and spend a few days 1 r 
the friend says, ' Oh, by all means ; I shall be charmed. What 
is the nearest station to your house 1 ' ' Well,' the friend says, 
4 1 am not very well off at present with regard to railway com- 
munication; the nearest station is sixteen miles from my house; 
but it is a good road : you will get a nice fly, and you will come 
very well.' Upon which the invited guest says, ' Did you say 
it was Tuesday you asked me for 1 ' ' Yes/ says the country- 
man; 'and I think you told me that you were free on that day.' 
Upon which the other replies, 'I have a very bad memory. 
Upon my word, I am very sorry, but I have a particular 
engagement on that day. Some other time I shall be happy 
"to come down to you.' Then he offers himself as a visitor to 
some other friend, who has a station within one or two miles of 
his house. (Laughter.) 

This autumn Lord Palmerston became eighty years 
.old. Traits of physical vigour at such an advanced 
period of life are always interesting and generally in- 
structive, as teaching us how best to preserve and enjoy 
those bodily faculties which we receive at our birth. 
Lord Palmerston was endowed with an excellent con- 


stitution, and was very temperate both in eating and 
drinking ; but he maintained his freshness, both of mind 
and body, to a great degree by the exercise of his will* 
He never gave anything up on the score of age. At any 
rate, he never owned to that as a reason. He used to go 
out partridge-shooting long after his eyesight was too 
dim to take a correct aim, and persevered in his other 
outdoor pursuits. Twice during this year, starting at 
nine o'clock and not getting back till two, he rode over 
from Broadlands to the training stables at Littleton, to 
see his horses take a gallop on Winchester racecourse. 
He rode down in June to Harrow speeches, and timed 
himself to trot the distance from Piccadilly to the head 
master's door, nearly twelve miles, within the hour, and 
accomplished it. On his eightieth birthday, in October, 
he started at half-past eight from Broadlands, taking 
his horses by train to Fareham, was met by Engineer 
officers, and rode along the Portsdown and Hilsea lines 
of forts, getting off his horse and inspecting some of 
them, crossing over to Anglesey forts and Gosport, and 
not reaching home till six in the evening — an instance 
of such combined energy both of mind and body as 
cannot in the nature of things be very common at 

The opening of the session of 1865 found Lord 
Palmerston still maintaining his ground in the confi- 
dence of the nation. Party spirit was not extinct, bat 
it was